The City of Smithville will soon be extending sewer services to an area annexed into the city limits earlier this year.
During their regular monthly meeting Monday night, the aldermen awarded a contract to the low bidder, Flo-Line Contracting, LLC of Monticello, Kentucky for $141,600.
A bid opening was held Thursday, September 25 at city hall on providing low pressure sewers for the area on Highway 70 west. Bids were received from three companies, Madewell Construction Inc. of Spencer for $163,865 and John T. Hall Construction, Inc. of Sparta for $162,445, in addition to Flo-Line Contracting, LLC.
J.R. Wauford & Company Consulting Engineers, Inc., the city's utility engineer, evaluated the bids and recommended the low bidder.
The sewer project will serve an area which includes six parcels of property and a portion of another parcel which were annexed on the west side of the city. The properties were zoned and a plan of services was adopted for the area, in accordance with state law which establishes a timeframe within which city services and/or amenities are to be provided. Property owners in the area who wish to connect to the new sewer lines must bear the expense of taps and the pump system on their property.
In other business, the aldermen voted to make an offer to purchase a home on Allen's Chapel Road that is in the airport runway flight path. To comply with FAA regulations, the home must be removed. The offer, being made to the property owner through the city's airport engineer, is for $80,500. Although the city has budgeted $96,000 for this expense, all but five percent of the costs will be covered by a grant for which the city has been approved by the state. The property has already been surveyed and appraised.
Meanwhile, the City of Smithville is having another water cost study done. Results of the last study released in 2013 revealed the cost for the city to produce water to be $2.67 per 1,000 gallons. City officials believe that cost may be more now. Any change in the rate based on results of a new cost study could have an impact on the DeKalb Utility District which currently pays $2.67 per thousand gallons for the water it buys from the city.
In other matters, Airport Manager Wesley Nokes updated the mayor and aldermen on the status of other airport improvement projects being funded mostly by grants.
Nokes said bids have been advertised twice for a new fuel farm at the airport but so far there have been no bidders. "We had the fuel farm put out for bids twice but we didn't get any bids on that. TDOT has recommended that we wait before we put it back out for bids again. There are very few contractors that are licensed to do this kind of work in Tennessee and apparently they are all very busy and have more work than they need right now. TDOT has recommended that we wait probably another four to six weeks before we put that back out," he said.
Meanwhile, Nokes said bids have been advertised for the airport lighting rehabilitation project. Bids will be opened on Friday, October 24. "That is to replace all the airfield lighting with new LED's, a new beacon, beacon tower, a new electrical vault which will be outside and will house all of our airfield lighting electronics. That will get it out of the big hangar which will free up some more space for the maintenance operation. I've also included a backup generator so that when power goes out we'll have airfield lighting and the fuel farm will be able to operate in the event of power failure," said Nokes.
To meet FAA regulations, several trees were cut and removed recently that were penetrating the approach paths at the airport . "We just finished the tree removal project. We had to break that down into two phases per the state. The first phase was to clear the approaches on both ends (of the runway). We got all those cut and we got approval on that. The second phase of that which we are doing some engineering on right now will consist of removing some trees that are out farther to take care of our night time approach issues that the FAA has with us. The FAA recently did a fly over of several airports in the area and deemed that there were obstructions that were hazards to night time approach. They shut down the night time approaches to a various group of airports (including Smithville) and didn't notify anybody. The way I became aware of it was when one of the pilots told me that on his new approach plates that it had been deemed void due to these obstructions. We're working to correct it and when we get some numbers in hand, I'll be back to ask you (to apply) for another grant to take care of the second part of that," said Nokes.