Council OKs bridge inspections
The Eudora City Council voted unanimously Monday to approve a contract for bridge inspections. After the Interstate 35 bridge in Minnesota collapsed in 2007, Kansas Department of Transportation officials began reviewing the bridge inspection process throughout the state. They found that many small cities had not been doing such inspections. All bridges that are more than 20 feet long are required to be inspected, but City Administrator Cheryl Beatty found that the four bridges in Eudora fitting that description had never been inspected. Beatty asked Douglas County and then KDOT to inspect the bridges, but both entities declined to do so because of liability concerns. KDOT did, however, recommend a state certified bridge engineer who works at the Manhattan office of BG Consultants. The contract with BG will cost $1,700. The following bridges will be inspected. • Seventh Street, between Oak and Acorn streets • Ninth Street, between Oak and Acorn streets • 13th Street, between Bluestem and Sandusky drives • 14th Street, between Tall Grass and Arrowhead drives Once the bridges get onto state and national lists of inspected bridges, Eudora will qualify for state and federal funds for repairs. Beatty already knows the Ninth Street bridge needs some work and had $50,000 set aside in the 2009 budget. She hopes to get matching money through grants. The bridges need to be inspected every two years. In other actions, the council: • Added 10 days to the contract of RD Johnson Excavation to fix the Main Street wall. The work will cost about $16,775, which will be charged to the owners of the wall. However, Beatty doesn’t believe the owners will pay and within four years the city could own the wall. • Received an update on the wastewater head works and lagoon project. The project, which would give the plant more capacity and allow it to function at a higher level for a longer amount of time, was designed by BG Consultants and approved by the Kansas Department of Health and Environment and was estimated to cost about $1.1 million. However, changes to staff and standards at KDHE put the new estimated cost at about $1.2 million. BG will advertise for bids Monday with plans to begin construction in spring 2009. • Approved the audit contract for Lowenthal Singleton Webb and Wilson at a cost of $12,350. • Approved a $5,200 training contract for electric department employees. • Approved a utility system mutual aid resolution and agreement wherein Eudora would receive and provide aid to and for neighboring municipalities should a natural disaster occur.