Water and sewer work on hill almost finished

The Lovell Town Council covered numerous topics in a remarkably short period of time during the council’s regular meeting last Tuesday, June 12.

Engineer Frank Page gave his monthly report on the water and sewer project and presented a detailed update on the project schedule.

Page said the South Phase is going well with work wrapping up on the hill and going full speed ahead on streets below. Water lines were finished on Nevada, 10th and Wyoming, Page said, and concrete work was also being finished on the hill. He said 10th Street could be paved this week.

He said work on the National Guard Armory sewer line was tentatively scheduled for the week of June 25.

In her monthly report, Lovell Inc. Director Sue Taylor said she had hired Rocky Mountain High School junior Sydney Tyacke through Workforce Services funding, noting that the student is “doing a great job and working out very well.”

She also reported on the fundraising breakfast hosted by Lovell Inc. on June 7, noting that the organization received $10,500 in annual pledges plus a $500 check, with more pledges expected to follow.

Asbestos abatement

Taylor reported to the council that due to scavenging of copper pipe at the site of the old North Big Horn Hospital building, which caused disturbance at the building, bids for asbestos removal have come in much higher than the original estimate of $139,919. The low bid was $196,000 from Environmental Contractors LLC, and another from Safetech Inc. came in at $217,800.

Taylor explained that after an initial inspection but before the Town of Lovell took possession of the property, someone entered the building to scavenge copper pipe in the crawl space. Asbestos pipe wrap was knocked off and the pipe removed, forcing the removal of dirt in the crawl space down to the hard pan to get all of the asbestos fibers out when abatement begins.

Contractors have also asked for additional time to complete the project – until August 31.

The council voted to award the abatement bid to Environmental Contractors LLC and to authorize Mayor Bruce Morrison to sign the notice of award, the notice to proceed and the contract, changing the completion date to August 31, with work beginning June 27.

The council passed three ordinances on third and final reading: Ordinance 920 correcting an article number in the town code, Ordinance 921 setting the 2012-13 fiscal year budget and Ordinance 922 setting the annual tax levy for the Town of Lovell.

The council also voted to remove from the table and pass a contract modification with the Big Horn County Sheriff’s Office.

Under new business, the council passed a resolution approving the town’s participation in the Wyoming Water Development Commission grant program and accepting the grant for the design portion of the Main Street Phase of the water and sewer project in the amount of $67,000. The council then passed a second resolution agreeing to maintain the current Depreciation/Short Lived Assets Account for repair and maintenance of the water system and contribute $5,000 per year to the account until the fund reaches $300,000 as required by the WWDC in order to receive grant funding.

The passage of the two resolutions led to a vote for the mayor to sign the grant agreement with the WWDC for $67,000 and a vote to send a letter to the WWDC requesting that DOWL/HKM continue to be the engineering firm on the Main Street project.

In other action Tuesday:

•The council voted to authorize the mayor to sign the agreement for the $15,770 grant award for the annual mosquito grant under the West Nile Virus Prevention program.

•The council authorized the mayor to sign an agreement with the Wyoming Dept. of Transportation for a $5,000 Safe Routes to School grant for education if money becomes available under the program.

•The council approved two catering permits for the Byron Bar, one for a wedding reception at the community center on June 16 and another for a reception on July 7.

•Councilman Brian Dickson discussed with the council bylaws changes for the Wyoming Association of Municipalities.

A member of the Wilson Brothers Construction crew moves a manhole into place.

•The council voted to table a request from Dave Bischoff for reimbursement for a drain pipe on his property northeast of town, raising questions about the town’s responsibility for drainage not within the town limits. The town will seek advice from legal counsel and obtain more information on the request.

•The council declined a request for funding from the Big Horn Mountains Country Coalition, stating that they might be more receptive if a representative of the four-county organization would come and make a presentation.

•Morrison reported on the June 7 mayors’ meeting in Frannie, noting that the municipalities in the county have each agreed to fund placing the sixth-cent sales tax on the November General Election ballot to the tune of $3,500. He said a political action committee would need to be formed using private funding in order to promote the sales tax measure.

•Following a closed session, the council voted to authorize the mayor to sign an agreement to relinquish funds contingent upon a settlement being reached on the lawsuits involving Excel Construction in regard to the North Phase of the water and sewer project.

By David Peck