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B.E. Council hears project recap

BLUE EARTH– Blue Earth engineer Ben Rosol led the final assessment hearing for the 2023 Street & Utility Improvement Project at the start of a City Council meeting held on Tuesday.

The project, which took place last summer, consisted of improvements to Moore Street, Galbraith Street, Ramsey Street, First Street and Third Street. It included necessary improvements to sanitary sewer, storm sewer and water main, as well as street construction and sidewalk and boulevard improvements.

“The project is not totally finished up,” Rosol clarified. “We still will be putting the final layer of bituminous on this summer.”

Bolton & Menk will also be completing a few punch list items with the project’s contractor, Holtmeier Construction.

The project’s total cost came to $4,478,731. It will be financed through a general obligation bond with a 15-year term and a 3.51 percent interest rate, as well as by sanitary sewer and water rates. The Storm Sewer Fund and the Street Fund will also contribute to the project’s financing.

The remaining $1,013,787 of the project’s costs will be financed by assessments against benefiting property owners.

Rosol said a quick word about the importance of caring for newly-installed sod.

“Be mindful of the sod for the next growing seasons,” he suggested. “Think about warm and dry weather to water accordingly to get the sod established. It takes time before it can take off and be resistant to drought conditions.”

Rosol also urged the public to inform Bolton & Menk or staff at City Hall as soon as possible if they discover issues at their property which should be addressed along with other punch list items.

The council then passed Resolution 24-03 adopting the final assessments for the 2023 Street & Utility Improvement Project.

In other business, the Blue Earth City Council:

— Passed Resolution 24-04 declaring costs to be assessed for the 2024 Street and Infrastructure Improvements, and calling for a hearing on the proposed assessments on May 18.

— Approved the sale of a city-owned lot at the Prairie View Addition to Jared Bruellman for $5,000.

— Went into closed session to discuss pending litigation related to the annexation agreement and the assessment appeal cases. No action was taken.

— Scheduled a special meeting on Monday, Feb. 26, at 4:45 p.m.

— Reviewed a proposed ordinance to amend a subsection of the City Code regulating kennels, and set a second reading to approve the proposed changes on March 4.

— Approved a proposal for the city to finance a seventh-month advertising package from KEYC to air commercials promoting the city of Blue Earth. The advertising package is expected to cost $5,000.

— Approved a grant application letter from the Blue Earth Municipal Airport to finance a new mower.

— Authorized the city to borrow $250,000 from the Economic Development Authority (EDA) to help finance the Putnam Park tennis courts reconstruction project, which is estimated to cost $1.3 million. The funds will be borrowed at a four percent interest rate with a five-year term.

— Authorized the city to borrow $200,000 from the Fitness Center Enterprise Frundt at a 2.5 percent interest rate, with a five-year term, to help finance the tennis court project.

— Authorized the city to borrow $225,000 from the Liquor Enterprise Fund at a 2.5 percent interest rate, with a five-year term, to help finance the tennis court project.

— Approved the publication of a Request for Proposals for mowing services for city-owned properties.

— Accepted Ray Wigern’s resignation from the Street Committee following 17 years of service.

— Approved the 2024 Presidential Nomination Primary Election judges.

— Voted to table a travel request from liquor store manager Dave Olson and employee Amber Belaski, who want to attend the Minnesota Municipal Beverage Association Annual Conference in April.

— Approved permit applications for Norseman Lobster Food Truck and the Chick-fil-a Food Truck.

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