By ERIC X. VICCARO
The city of Ste. Genevieve, in part due to the global COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic, didn’t repave any streets during 2020.
That’s about to change after the board of aldermen met on Thursday, May 12, at city hall.
Under new business, city administrator and elected officials discussed moving forward with the street repaving program.
Ultimately, the city received five bids from area contractors to repave the following streets: Cedar LaPorte, Biltmore, North Fourth Street, Hillside, Wehner and Parkwood.
The city had budgeted $245,997 for all of the projects; however, the lowest bid was for $293,906 from Vern Bauman Contracting of Ste. Genevieve.
As noted in the meeting packet sent to the board of aldermen, Vern Bauman provided the lowest bid after “the total was reconfigured removing fabric and fiber.”
The other construction firms involved in the bidding process were Jokerst, Inc., of Ste. Genevieve, the unrelated Jokerst Paving and Contracting of Festus, Paving Pros of Oak Ridge and West Contracting of Pacific.
Since the street repaving project was over the budgeted amount, city administrator Happy Welch recommended eliminating paving Parkwood – and also allow city public works staff to repair the Park House parking lot at Pere Marquette and the short street from KSGM Dr. to Matthews Dr.
Welch provided his rationale not to include Parkwood in this year’s program.
“After multiple trips with various contractors, and (field operations supervisor) Gary Roth to Parkwood Drive,” Welch said. “I would recommend we consider work there and on Pointe Basse for the deteriorated areas, or a complete mill of three-inches and paving replacement of three inches.
“Estimates for those repairs will be just short of $200,000,” Welch continued. “But, I don’t want to create a water issue by raising the road three inches with an asphalt overlay.”
The repaving program will not begin until August after the water main replacement project on North Fourth Street has been completed.
Ward 2 Alderman Bob Donovan was concerned about how the city is “building a base” on its roads, noting cracking on streets such as Maple.
The contract with Bauman was unanimously approved by a 7-0 vote, with Ward 4 Aldermen Joe Prince absent.
Also under new business, Ward 1 Alderman Gary Smith made a motion, and Donovan seconded, the approval of a new 10-foot dump truck bed at a cost of $16,634.86.
Kranz Body, LLC, of St. Louis had the lowest of four bids. Welch said the dump truck bed will be used for snowplowing, hauling and other needs.
“With the $14,000 budget and the $3,500 we saved on the trailer purchase earlier this year, we have enough in the capital line item for the dump truck bed,” Welch said.
There will be an additional purchase of an electric tarp roller in conjunction with the dump truck bed, at a cost of just $97.62.
In related infrastructure news, plans for the water line improvement are complete and will be published in the Herald. Welch expects elected officials to approve a bid for the project at the end of June.
What’s more, as per Section 140.050 of the purchasing policy, the city will be buying more than $40,000 in PVC piping in the next couple of weeks before it becomes “scarce,” as reported by its engineers, later this summer.
Section 140.050 allows the city to immediately purchase supplies or contractual services in the event of an “apparent emergency.”
• Welch noted that the “notice to proceed” has not been given yet on the upcoming police department remodel.
The city is working on shipping dates so Donze Construction can schedule when to start and having the necessary equipment arrive on schedule.
Police department personnel have started work on acquiring storage for evidence and equipment. Welch expects the project to begin in roughly five weeks.
• Two police cars and an old street/parks truck are available for bid at the online auction website, purplewave.com. All the vehicles have received some initial bids, with May 25 the deadline. There is a link to the bidding on the city’s Facebook page.
• The city has received four applications for the soon-to-be tourism director vacancy. Welch also reported the city will be hiring three seasonal employees this summer to help the street and parks department.