On July 24 Lisa Kramer, Darren Forgy and Matthew Miller of Prairie
Engineers performed their first duties as interim city engineers
when they opened bids for three large street projects.
projects are a reconstruction job on Lincoln Avenue from North Logan
to College; repairing bridge approaches over Brainard's Branch on
Jefferson, State and Palmer; and removing the Oglesby Avenue bridge.
Three firms bid for the Lincoln Avenue project with bids ranging
from $300,026.98 to $363,291.02. Kramer told the council all three
bids were under the cost projected by the city engineer.
For the demolition of the Oglesby Street bridge, there were five
bids ranging from $68,012.03 to $100,300. All of the bids were over
the estimated cost of $55,000.
For the work on bridge approaches, four firms offered bids
ranging from $31,259.66 to $56,103.05. The council was told that the
estimated cost was $50,000.
After the bids were opened, the new engineers said they would
review the bid packets for compliance with the specifications and
report back to the city with a recommendation the next week.
Alderwoman Marty Neitzel asked that the items be included in the
voting agenda for Aug. 6. However, when the items came to a vote
last week, Neitzel asked that the motions be tabled.
This week Forgy opened bids for work to be done on the sewer
lines on Union Street. The project will be a slip lining of 900 feet
of sewer line on north Union Street. The slip lining process will
involve sliding a new flexible sewer line inside the existing line,
which is deteriorating.
The city plans on doing this project now, and in the next fiscal
year approving a plan to resurface North Union.
When Forgy opened the first bidder's envelope, he immediately
noted that no bid bond was included in the packet. As he moved on to
the second one, he found no bid bond there either and then did a
quick review of the bid specifications. He told the council that a
bid bond had not been required for this project by the city of
Three firms offered bids on the project, with dollar figures
ranging from $58,455 to $99,750. Forgy said all three bids were well
under the $160,000 engineer-estimated cost.
When Forgy finished, Mayor Keith Snyder asked if the project
could go on next week's voting agenda. Forgy said that it could, but
he wanted to contact the bidders about the lack of a bid bond. He
said some changes might have to be made because of that.
Later in the meeting, Marty Neitzel, who chairs the streets and
alley committee, said she'd like to call a committee meeting for
Aug. 28 at 6:15 p.m. She said the purpose of the meeting would be to
discuss the bids opened on July 24. She gave no indication as to why
the bids needed to be discussed but simply said there were some
changes that needed to be made.
In a related issue, Snyder told the council he had received a
letter from Gov. Pat Quinn's office stating that the city of Lincoln
would once again be receiving some windfall cash through the motor
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The state will distribute funds totaling
approximately $100 million statewide this year from that
tax. Lincoln's share will come to $66,743 and should arrive in
The money does not have to be spent in this fiscal year.
Snyder said there would be two more years of this special
At last week's meeting, the council also voted to approve the
purchase of new equipment for the waste treatment plant.
David Kitzmiller of American Water/EMC was on hand to explain the
project. The waste treatment plant is in need of a new transfer pump
and a new blower. He said the equipment could be purchased and
installed by Illinois Electrical Works for $120,788.
The city will, however, receive a rebate for the purchase in the
amount of $75,900 through the Ameren Illinois Act on Energy program.
Kitzmiller said the money from Ameren would be paid within 45 days
of the completion of the project.
Because the sewer department is still suffering cash-flow issues,
the money to pay the bill will be borrowed from the city's general
obligation bond. When the $75,900 arrives, it will immediately be
paid to the bond, with the balance being paid in monthly
installments from sewer collections.
Neitzel was asked how long it would take to pay back all the
money, and she indicated that it should all be paid before the end
of this fiscal year.
Kitzmiller also told the group that with the new energy-efficient
equipment, the city will save an estimated $66,000 a year in
electric costs at the waste treatment plant.
The decision to go forward with Kitzmiller's plan had to be voted
upon. It passed unanimously.
This week, waste treatment plant manager Darrell Palmer, along
with Neitzel, told the council there was a slight change in the
plans for the new equipment.
Because the rebate is more than $50,000, Ameren will have to
treat it as a grant, which would delay the payment by several
months. However, the project can be broken into two parts, which
would drop each rebate below the $50,000 mark.
There was no action needed on this. It was offered to the council
simply to keep them up-to-date with the activities at the waste
[By NILA SMITH]