Council discusses sewers, budget items

The Marshalltown City Council discussed various budget items and land use specifications at Monday’s Committee of the Whole meeting.

Lynn Couch, Public Works director, said a sanitary sewer project east of Third Avenue and north of Main Street will focus on putting slip lining on the sewers in that area.

The construction order will come in March 25. There will be a public hearing on the plans and specifications April 22 with bids due by May 2.

Sewers were also the topic of another discussion item. The proposed storm sewer utility rate ordinance will be handled with existing staff, Couch said. The city will subsidize the storm utility with the sanitary sewer utility to cover the cost of the levy for the first two years in the northeast part of town.

“There is the right to appeal – if someone doesn’t believe their bill is being calculated correctly,” said Randy Wetmore, city administrator. “And there is also a section in there for exemptions and credits.”

Credits and exemptions would range from 10 to 65 percent for those who can prove their business contains a portion of the storm water to its property.

Lori Stansberry, finance director, said the storm sewer utility is running a $75,000 deficit as of Jan. 31.

An Alliant project that would reduce energy use at the Water Pollution Control Plant by $84,000 a year would see crews replace blowers, pumps and lighting. A public hearing on that project is set for April 8; bids are due by 10 a.m. April 10. The council will accept the bid and award the contract April 22.

Couch also presented bids for microsurfacing and crack sealing for the streets leftover from last year. The bids were within the County Engineer’s estimate, coming in at $173,978.05 for crack sealing and $179,724.40 for microsurfacing.

The council also considered two agreements with the city – one for the umpires association and another renewing the lease with the American Legion Post No. 46.

Wetmore said the umpire agreement is the same as previous agreements, paying umpires $25 per game.

Curt Ward, city attorney, said the 20-year lease with the legion needed minor changes changing the yearly rent from $1 to $2.50 and changing the lease to exclude a ball diamond owned by the city.

“I don’t think the Legion is asking for that property,” he said.

Marshalltown Police Chief Mike Tupper also told the council that an $8,000 vehicle for the department’s detective division should be the last vehicle purchase the MPD needs to make this fiscal year, bringing it under budget for vehicle replacement.

At-large Council Member Bethany Wirin was absent.