B.E. OKs construction bids

BLUE EARTH– The Blue Earth City Council approved a bid at their meeting on Monday night for this summer’s street and utility construction project.

“We opened bids this morning,” city engineer Ben Rosol, of Bolton and Menk, reported to the council. “There were two bids received.”

Rosol said the staff recommended accepting the low bid, which was $2.99 million dollars for the main project, and an additional $52,000 for an alternate project bid.

The bid came from Holtmeier Construction. The other bid was $3.94 million from Heselton Construction, with $86,000 for the alternate added bid.

The main bid is for full street reconstruct on Rice Street from Seventh Street to First Street, Second Street from Gorman Street to Rice Street, and First Street from its dead end to Rice Street. In addition there is a mill and overlay with utility improvements on Tenth Street from Ramsey Street to Rice Street and Eleventh Street from Ramsey Street to Rice Street.

The alternate add on bid is for sidewalk and parking lot improvements to the Senior Center.

The council approved the low bid. Rosol said he expected construction to start in May.

In other business, the Blue Earth City Council:

— Heard an update from former Blue Earth Chamber of Commerce director Shellie Poetter about a proposed playground near the Green Giant statue.

She said plans are progressing and asked the council for its support in three ways – to allow the playground to be on city-owned land by the Giant, the city to become the fiscal agent for the project, and the city to cover the cost of liability insurance.

The council voted to agree to all three items.

— Heard a report from current Chamber executive director Sarah Ferguson about the Green Giant stature needing repairs done, and new painting, complete with a sealer applied before the paint.

Cost will be $24,500, with the painter making a $3,000 donation to lower the cost to $21,500.

It is hoped the project can be completed before Giant Days weekend.

The City Council verbally agreed to assist with the cost, but no actual amount was decided on at Monday’s meeting.

— Discussed an issue of Crescent Apartments residents walking their dogs on the Church of the Good Shepherd property, which is owned by the Faribault County Historical Society.

The council promised to have the matter discussed at the next HRA meeting, as the HRA owns the apartment complex.

— Had two closed sessions scheduled, but one was actually kept open. Both concerned complaints against four city employees.

Library employee Mollie Halverson was terminated after a long discussion of the complaints against her which were discussed in the open meeting, at her request. Blue Earth Wine and Spirits employees Amber Belaski, David Olson and Tammy Davis had the complaints against them discussed in closed session and the council dismissed all allegations against them, with no further action to be taken, and the matter was considered closed.

— Voted to proceed with hiring a security company for installing a security systems in the new City Hall.

— Postponed voting on the Riverside Annexation Agreement until the next meeting, as some changes to the agreement were proposed. Also postponed any decisions on changes to the City Charter until all council members could be present, as it takes a 7-0 vote to pass them and one member was absent on Monday.


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