City skirts ordinance, to repair sewer line at Glass Bayou

Published 11:35 am Tuesday, November 8, 2011

A sewer line at a bridge on Adams Street will be repaired and replaced after the Vicksburg Board of Mayor and Aldermen waived a provision in the city’s bid ordinance and awarded a $28,500 project to a Tallulah contractor.

Walker Wells Construction Inc., one of two companies submitting quotes on the project, received the contract to replace the line across Glass Bayou. Riverside Construction of Vicksburg had bid $30,750.

The board waived the city’s $25,000 rule on construction projects and decided instead to use the state’s $50,000 threshold.

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“The low quote was just over the $25,000 limit, so we asked the board to waive the city’s rule and go with the state’s regulation,” city purchasing director Tim Smith said.

He said public works officials wanted to move ahead to replace the sewer line and remove two temporary lift stations that have been moving sewage since the bridge project began in 2009. It was completed in 2010.

Interim public works director Garnet Van Norman said there wasn’t enough money in the project budget at the time to replace the sewer line after the work was done. He said one of the lift stations served the city’s main line on Adams, while another across Glass Bayou served two homes.

“Using the state’s regulation saved us time from having to go out for bids, which would have taken about a month before we could award a contract,” Smith said.

According to the estimates, the job involves work on two manholes and installing 360 feet of pipe.

“They’ll have to tear up the street to put the lines in,” he said.

Van Norman said utility lines along the bridge were removed so it could be replaced with a box culvert, because the bridge was in a slide area. He said the project was funded with state aid bridge funds from the Mississippi Department of Transportation and Development.

On the agenda

Meeting Monday, the Vicksburg Board of Mayor and Aldermen:

• Recognized Vicksburg High School football coach Alonzo Stevens on his retirement.

• Approved buying holiday advertising from KHits 104.5 totaling $300 for Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s.

• Adopted the following budget amendments: transferred $35,000 from the city’s IT fund to Vicksburg Main Street to buy a new computer; transferred $35,000 from the gas department administration fund to the capital fund for a new generator; transferred $42 from the Ergon TIF sales tax fund to agent sales fund; transferred $170,000 from the federal grants fund to the inspection department capital fund for the depot restoration project; transferred $357,000 from the state grant fund for state Department of Human Services Good Shepherd project account. The city distributes the project money to Good Shepherd.

City accountant Doug Whittington said the $170,000 for the depot is for project bills for September.

• Authorized Mayor Paul Winfield to sign a memorandum of understanding between the city and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for mutual aid during emergencies.

• Approved a supplemental agreement with contractor Kenneth R. Thompson Jr. Builder Inc. for interior renovations to the depot. The $1,289 agreement involves the installation of a hot water heater, wiring, lighting and other work to two rooms.

• Authorized city clerk Walter Osborne to advertise for bids for an excavator and tilt trailer for the water department.

• Authorized a purchase requisition totaling $4,400 to Hydrotech Systems Ltd. of Cohoes, N.Y., to replace 50 swimming pool grates and fasteners. Hydrotech is a sole provider of the grates.

• Adopted letters setting a special assessment to clean the following properties: 1429 Martin Luther King Blvd., $156; 1740 Martin Luther King Blvd., $114; and 1742 Martin Luther King Blvd., all three properties are owned by the State of Mississippi.

In a related matter, the board authorized city buildings and inspection director Victor Gray-Lewis to remove a dilapidated building and clean property at 36 Hicks Hill Lane, and cut and clean property at 1400 Main St.

• Approved November and December advertising for Vicksburg Main Street totaling $7,352.

• Approved an application from the Vicksburg-Warren School District to use the Vicksburg Auditorium at no charge on Feb. 21 to 23 for a science fair.

• Approved paying the city’s share of $32,623 to Vicksburg-Warren 911 for dispatchers’ salaries and benefits for October.

• Approved $4,570 for The Initiative.