Bloomsdale Looks Into Water Line Replacement, Street Repair

By MARK EVANS

mevans@stegenherald.com

Bloomsdale Mayor Paul Monia suggested at the Sept. 8 Board of Aldermen meeting that the city look into updating water lines and streets in a phase by phase approach.

“I really want to dive into talking to Sappy and John (Ward 2 Alderman Chris “Sappy” Basler and water superintendent John Lurk) about possibly taking the city in phases and start  running the new main lines from the tower down and increasing the size of them.”

The water main replacement will necessarily lead to street repair, which was taken into consideration when the city pursued a successful pair of half-cent tax measures that passed in the April 2018 election.

Proposition A, which goes for capital improvements, passed 41-16, or by a 71.9 percent to 28.1 percent mark. Proposition B, a transportation sales tax, passed 37-20, or 64.9 percent to 35.1 percent.

“When we do that, we’re going to ruin a lot of things,” Monia said. “That’s ultimately what the one half-cent was for, to allow the road repair.”

Ward 1 Alderman Brandon Shortt asked for some clarification.

“When you say phases, you mean not necessarily this week, next week, but this year, next year?” he asked.

“Yes,” Monia relied “Just thinking about it in my head, they’re all big phases.”

It would be more convenient and economical to do the work in  “decent-sized phases,” the mayor said.

Monia said he would like to replace lines from  the water tower to Wally Eisenbeis’ home at 310 Highway 61.

“In doing that, it just makes the most sense to go around that block,” Monia said, “and get that much accomplished. And in Phase 2, I’d like to see everything  on the east side of 61, all the way down to BT Electric, which is right below Dew Drop.”

Shortt noted that the Missouri Department of Transportation MoDOT) will overlay Highway 61 in 2021.

“It would behoove us to be done before that,” Shortt said.

Monia said the city work would not disturb Highway 61.

“But, if you think we can handle that size of a project, would we, it would behoove us to be done. That way we would have all new roads.”

He added that they could “walk away from the northern end of the city for several year,” as far as big projects are concerned.

Monia said that some streets may present issues, such as Skywood, which would need to we widened if major work is done.

“That’s becoming a very active area and it really needs to be broadened up,” Monia siad, “because you’re going to have busses and a lot of things.”

Shortt asked whether the city is “financially healthy enough” to undertake such a big project.

Monia indicated that Basler has some contacts, who could give them an idea of the general price range they would be looking at.

The project would include replacing meters and hydrants.

Monia noted that the meter at his house dates back to 1964.

“Ultimately, we’ve done a lot of neat improvements, like having that secondary line going across I-55,” Monia said, “but we still aren’t supplying adequate water according to the hospital (Bloomsdale Family Health Center) to them.”

Monia clarified tat the clinic’s concern is  water pressure for its sprinkler system in case of a fire.

Shortt and Monia agreed that fire department in but will be important in making decisions on specifics of the project. Monia said that another plus is that the project will get rid of more of the old transite pipes, which, he noted “back in the day, was gold.”

Monia also noted that tax revenue has not tanked like many feared would happen, due to the COVID-19 shutdown this year. The August figure was $24,276, down just over $2,100 from the 2019 figure of $26,381, with both the capital improvement and transportation funds taking in $12,930, both down only about $1,000 fro August 2019.

UNDERAGE ATV USE A PROBLEM

For the second straight month, underage children on all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) on city streets was brought up. Last month, Ward 2 Alderman John Schweigert complained about children operating them on the streets.

This month, Shortt forwarded complaints about it. After some discussion, he and Schweigert came to the conclusion that these were not the same children, indicating a more widespread problem.

A suggestion had been made in August that Major Jason Schott of the Ste. Genevieve County Sheriff’s Department be contacted about the issue. He had not been contacted yet, city clerk Lynnette Randoll said.