MARCH 18, 2013
The Council of the City of Augusta, Kansas met in regular session on March 18, 2013, with Mayor Kristey Williams presiding. Council present were Matt Childers, Michael R. Martin, Sue Jones, Mike Rawlings and Ron Reavis. Council members Michael Huddleston, Michael Wallace, and Matt Malone were absent. Also present: City Attorney David All, City Manager Bill Keefer, Assistant to the City Manager Josh Shaw, Water/Wastewater Superintendent Russell Still, and City Clerk Erica Jones. Visitors present were: Belinda Larsen, Gary Rogers, Myrna Rogers, Willis Wilson, Tony Madrigal, John Black, Kent Overaker, Larry Henry, Garth Hermann, and Jamie Hubbard.
Prayer: Youth Pastor Brad Reynolds, Life Church, gave the invocation.
Minutes: Reavis made a motion to approve the minutes from the March 4, 2013 meeting. Martin seconded the motion. Motion carried without opposition.
March (3): S. Jones inquired about the payment to G Farney for Parks education. Keefer stated they conduct classes for swimming pools and sell pool related products and that the Parks staff will be attending a class in Topeka. S. Jones inquired about the payment to Kriz Davis. Keefer stated they are the supplier of Electric related equipment and this particular charge is for the large transformer for DJ Engineering. S. Jones asked if the $10,000 payment to Utility Contractors is the final payment and if they provided the appropriate fill dirt. Keefer stated it was and that they instructed the City to order the appropriate amount of fill dirt from Bergkamp and have them billed for it. Rawlings stated he saw city crews moving the dirt earlier today. Reavis made a motion to approve Ordinance 3 in the amount of $358,076.75. Rawlings seconded the motion. Motion carried without opposition.
Augusta Chamber of Commerce: Kent Overaker, Executive Director of the Augusta Chamber of Commerce, requested the use of City Hall and Channel 7 for a Candidate Forum on March 26th at 7p.m. S. Jones asked who would moderate the forum. Overaker stated Denise Rockers will be the moderator. Childers asked if there were any concerns from staff. Keefer stated there was not and that a staff member would be here to unlock the building and run the camera equipment. Childers made a motion to approve the use of City Hall and Channel 7 for a Candidate Forum on March 26th at 7p.m. Reavis seconded the motion. Motion carried without opposition.
Watering Restrictions: Council reviewed and discussed the City’s Watering Restrictions and related issues. Keefer stated there was nothing new to report, but that we will need to continue to monitor the situation as we get closer to the growing season.
Property and Liability Insurance Coverage: Council considered approval of the City of Augusta’s 2013/2014 Property and Liability Insurance Coverage. Tony Madrigal with Madrigal & Welch asked if the council had any questions about the proposal. Williams stated she was pleased to see it didn’t go up 30%. Madrigal stated that property rates went up but the liability and auto rates went down to offset those. He stated there was a 3% increase overall and that most cities are seeing a 10-15% increase. Reavis made a motion to approve the bid proposal from Madrigal & Welch for the renewals of the City’s 2013/2014 Property and Liability Insurance Coverage. Rawlings seconded the motion. Martin asked why the Airport Liability premium was not included. E. Jones stated that particular policy does not expire until April 15th and the proposal was not available in time for this council meeting. She stated it would be on the agenda for the April 1st meeting. Motion carried without opposition. Madrigal stated this is the 25th year Madrigal & Welch has provided the city’s insurance coverage.
GO Bond and Temp Note Financing: Reavis made a motion to approve Resolution 2013-05 authorizing the issuance of General Obligation Bonds for the City’s Spillway/Dam Project. Childers seconded the motion. Motion carried without opposition.
Rawlings made a motion to approve Resolution 2013-06 authorizing water system improvements as part of the City’s Water Supply Project. S. Jones seconded the motion. Motion carried without opposition.
Childers made a motion to approve Resolution 2013-07 authorizing the issuance of Temporary Notes for Water System improvements as part of the City’s Water Supply Project and renewal of the Temporary Notes for the Corp’s Levee Project. Rawlings seconded the motion. Motion carried without opposition.
Aqua Tech Engineers: Council considered approving an Engineering Services Agreement with Aqua Tech Engineers for various El Dorado Water Line Projects. Willis Wilson stated scope of work includes the new booster pump station, the water line from the new booster pump station to the existing booster pump station, a waterline from the existing booster pump station to refinery north property line and from refinery south property line to SW 40th and BNSF, the water line within the refinery, and the water line from SW 40th and BNSF to the Augusta Water Treatment Plant. Williams asked Wilson if he already had enough staff on hand to handle this project. Wilson stated he does and that if this is approved he will hire more staff to take care of other projects. He stated he will increase his staff from seven to eleven. Keefer stated the temporary notes will be issued to have adequate funding to get the project started, but that they do not carry us all the way through the design phase. Wilson agreed and said those items not included in the funding will be at the end of the project. Keefer stated this funding will get the ball rolling but we will need to sit down and take a look at long term funding for these projects.
S. Jones stated based on the figures in the memo we are looking at a $14.1 million project. Wilson agreed and stated it will be $13.9 million without including the engineering costs. Keefer stated the total cost of both the Water Line Projects and the Walnut River Water Supply Project will be close to $20 million. Rawlings asked Wilson if there was any contingency factored in to the project. Wilson stated he factored in a 15% contingency.
Reavis referenced the section of the contract regarding indemnification and said this will hold Aqua Tech harmless and asked how that would be handled if there were problems like at the Wastewater Treatment Plant. Keefer stated we have used this standard agreement with Aqua Tech before and said he would have to look to the city attorney but he thought this is standard in most agreements. Mr. All stated you will find these exchanges in indemnification in most contracts. He stated it says if Aqua Tech does something wrong they will fix it and if we do something wrong then we will fix it. Wilson stated they would be liable for any negligence on their part.
S. Jones referenced Exhibit A – Engineer’s Services and the section on page 8 regarding visits to site and observation of construction. She stated it has always bothered her in these standard contracts that it says “…the Engineer in general will determine in general if the work is proceeding in accordance with the contract documents…” and asked if the engineer is not the one doing this who would be. She asked how we protect the city to make sure they are proceeding in accordance with the contract. Wilson stated that without the words “in general” it would make the engineers responsible for every action of the contractor. Rawlings stated in most electrical designs it shows point A receptacle and point B receptacle but does not show the way from point A to point B and leaves that up to the contractor. S. Jones asked if we get any type of a narrative with the bid. Wilson stated we do not, that it is just unit price bids. He stated the specifications give the level of quality expected. S. Jones asked when we approve a bid does the contractor sign anything guaranteeing a certain level of quality. Wilson stated they do say they will adhere to the specifications and drawings provided by the engineer. S. Jones stated based on the timeline it looks like the timing for construction is out to early 2015. Wilson stated the construction should be complete somewhere around August 2015.
Reavis made a motion approving an Engineering Services Agreement with Aqua Tech Engineers for various El Dorado Water Line Projects. Childers seconded the motion. Motion carried without opposition.
Council considered approving an Engineering Services Agreement with Aqua Tech Engineers for the Walnut River Water Supply Project. Reavis stated the standard hourly rates on the memo and the spreadsheets are different. Keefer stated the cover spreadsheet includes DR1 and DR2 and when you add the permitting and support services to that it comes up to $462,380. Wilson stated the amounts in the contract match, but his spreadsheet is off.
Reavis stated as many aware he is opposed to this project. He stated he drove out to the river yesterday and there is no water in it to pump to the city lake. He stated if there is no rain between now and spring there will be no water to pump and that if it rains enough that the lake fills up we won’t need the water from the river. Reavis stated the study says the sedimentation will need to be cleaned out of the pre-sedimentation basin which will require permits and testing. He stated there have been concerns voiced by the public on why we haven’t dredged the city lake and the main reason has been because the silt may be contaminated and we would have to buy property to dispose of the silt. Williams stated that is not the major reason. Reavis stated that was irrelevant and that this would be another permit we will have to get from the EPA. He stated there will be continuous maintenance for this project and we will have to purchase land for the basin. Reavis stated that based on his calculations, if the silt is 2 feet deep when we clean it out it will be 31,566 cubic yards of silt and would be 1,558 truckloads of sediment we will have to relocate. Williams questioned how long it would take to accumulate 2 feet of sediment. She stated the city lake only accrues one centimeter of sediment per year.
Wilson stated the river water is clearer than the water in the city lake and that all the testing of the river came back negative. He stated you could wait for the sediment in the basin to reach 2 feet or you could do it when it is less than that. He stated you would move the sediment to the side of the basin to dry and then dispose of it or use it as top soil. Williams asked how often it would be done if we waited for it to reach 2 feet. Wilson stated it would be once every 10-20 years depending on the turbidity of the river.
Williams asked if we would have been able to draw water from the river in 2012 if we had the rights. Wilson stated we could have. Williams stated that prior to the work shop several of the council members agreed with Reavis, but after the work shop and seeing that it could have helped in this situation and in the future they changed their minds. Reavis inquired about zebra mussels and stated that the potassium permanganate that will be used to kill them is another system that will have to be maintained at the river. He stated he does not know why we would want to take the chance of introducing zebra mussels to the city lake. Reavis stated he contacted DWR today to see if there are any other municipalities with systems like this in place and they couldn’t think of any other than golf courses that pump water from creeks to water their grounds with. He stated they told him the Walnut River has minimum flow standards. Reavis stated in summary this is too big of an unknown deal. He stated the big ongoing maintenance issue and the zebra mussels make this not a good idea. Wilson stated DWR is the one who suggested we look at this option. Williams asked if this is approved tonight but we decide later not to pursue this, could we give notice and terminate the contract. Wilson said yes. Williams stated this is the third time since the lake was build that it has almost gone dry. Rawlings stated had we had this system in place already we would have been able to get the lake back in place before DWR would cut off the river supply. He stated it looked to him like the water in the river is moving at a good rate. Rawlings stated he definitely thinks we need to pursue this for the future because we don’t know what could happen to the El Dorado waterline at any given time. He stated if the city lake were full we would have a backup supply. Shaw stated taking the water from the river to surface water storage is basically the same concept as what is being done in Wichita.
Keefer asked Wilson what he would consider to be a fatal flaw. Wilson stated unavailability of water throughout the year to do what we want to do. Reavis asked what kind of issues we will have with the Railroad. Wilson stated there would be one railroad crossing and we would have to pay an annual fee for that. Wilson stated we are looking at increasing the sediment basin to prevent future siltation of the city lake. Rawlings made a motion approving an Engineering Services Agreement with Aqua Tech Engineers for the Walnut River Water Supply Project. S. Jones seconded the motion. Motion carried with Reavis and Martin voting in opposition.
VFD Bids: Rawlings abstained from the discussion due to a conflict of interest. With Rawlings abstaining there was not a quorum to take action on this agenda item. S. Jones said it looks like we had difficulty in getting people to bid because of the requirements for the equipment, that they took exception to the specifications. Wilson stated there are only a couple of drive manufacturers that could meet the requirements. He stated there were a couple of the manufacturers that said they had drives that could meet the specs, but each drive was nearly $40,000 so they didn’t submit a bid. He stated one bidder dropped out because they weren’t comfortable with the specifications and the other didn’t feel they could be competitive on the price. Rawlings stated his supplier does about 90% of the VFD’s in the Kansas City area and is one of Cutler Hammer’s top customers.
Childers stated that on the face of this, if he were a citizen and the only person bidding on this was a council member and it awarded to them, it would be cause for concern. He stated he understands the RFP process and what they are up against and he isn’t sure what the solution is. Childers stated the council is aware this is a delicate situation and that he hates that we can’t get more than one bid. Childers stated that without competition, on the face of it, he as a citizen he would be concerned.
USD #402 Fiber Optic Network: Reavis made a motion to approve an agreement with USD #402 to use the City’s right-of-way along Summit Street to extend their fiber optic network to Robinson School. Childers seconded the motion. Motion carried without in opposition.
Childers made a motion to approve an agreement with USD #402 to use the City’s right-of-way along State Street to extend their fiber optic network to the Middle School. Reavis seconded the motion. Motion carried without in opposition.
South Ohio Street Project – Engineering Agreement: Council considered an Engineering Services Agreement with MKEC for the conceptual design and cost estimates for the South Ohio Street Project. Larry Henry with MKEC stated this project was scheduled in the city’s CIP for 2015. He stated this is for a preliminary design and decision making tool for the council. He stated this is a KDOT project and the State will pay 80% of the costs of the project and the city will pay 20%. He stated we need to get a good handle on what other costs are likely to be incurred by the city and what right of way will be needed. Reavis asked if the preliminary approval from KDOT makes it a three lane road if that would be a requirement. Henry said it would not be a requirement. Keefer stated this was part of the 5 year program that KDOT no longer has. He stated we will not be locked in to a three lane road. Keefer stated MKEC will identify issues we will have to deal with, such as the need to replace the waterline along that area. He stated we will also need to relocate the electric and monitor the sewer line. Keefer stated this will help us find out what is realistic. Reavis stated he wants to make sure it is a comparison of our options. Williams stated this is a first step.
Reavis made a motion to approve an Engineering Services Agreement with MKEC for the conceptual design and cost estimates for the South Ohio Street Project. Childers seconded the motion. Motion carried without opposition.
Kelly/Ohio Project: Reavis made a motion to approve a Letter Agreement with Goedecke Engineering for the review of KDOT Shop Drawings as part of the Kelly and Ohio Street Intersection Project. Childers seconded the motion. Motion carried without opposition.
Training Area License Agreement with the Kansas Army National Guard: Rawlings made a motion to approve a Training Area License Agreement with the Kansas Army National Guard for Santa Fe Lake. Childers seconded the motion. S. Jones asked why this is being moved up a year. Keefer stated the Sergeant indicated there are going to be some staff changes and he wanted to have this taken care of. Motion carried without opposition.
Annual LWCF Maintenance Assurance Agreement: Rawlings made a motion to approve the annual LWCF Maintenance Assurance Agreement with the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism. Childers seconded the motion. Motion carried without opposition.
Corps Levee Project – Thunder Road Relocation: Rawlings made a motion to approve two Easement for Right-of-Way agreements with Butler County for the relocation of Thunder Road as part of the levee enhancement project. Reavis seconded the motion. Motion carried without opposition.
Reavis made a motion to authorize the improvement of the 200 block of West 6th Street as part of the road improvement project by Butler County along Thunder Road. Rawlings seconded the motion. Motion carried without opposition.
Give Back Day: Williams stated she would not be available to participate this year. Childers stated he currently had a conflict on that date. S. Jones and Reavis stated they would be available. Williams stated she would send out an invitation to the schools to participate. S. Jones made a motion to approve the City of Augusta’s participation in the 4th Annual Grizzlies Give Back Day on Saturday, April 27th. Childers seconded the motion. Motion carried without opposition.
Attorney General Settlement Agreement: Council received an update from the City Attorney regarding the Attorney General’s KOMA Settlement Agreement. Mr. All stated the Attorney General’s office has approved the last agreement he presented at the March 4th council meeting. He stated he was not able to get an answer back in time for tonight’s meeting regarding what would happen to those who do not want to sign the agreement. S. Jones stated the issue was tabled at the last council meeting. Williams asked that it be put on the agenda for the next council meeting. S. Jones stated she was trying to understand if the County Attorney letter was sufficient. Mr. All stated it did not address the issues in the agreement.
Executive Session: At 8:34 p.m. Childers made a motion to go in to executive session for 10 minutes to discuss matters related to non-elected personnel per the request of the City Manager and to return at 8:44 p.m. in the council chambers. S. Jones seconded the motion. Motion carried without opposition.
At 8:44 p.m. Childers made a motion to exit executive session with no binding action being taken. Rawlings seconded the motion. Motion carried without opposition.
Informational & Final Comments:
S. Jones: S. Jones stated the Safety Department’s monthly report stated there was difficulty with the 2-wheel Tahoe’s navigating through the snow in the recent snow storms. She recommended they consider all-wheel drive when looking at purchasing vehicles in the future.
Rawlings: Rawlings stated there are bricks that have settled in the 1100 block of State Street. Keefer stated he would pass that information on to the street department.
Martin: Martin stated there are pot holes on 7th Street in front of Jump Start, Rose Hill Bank, and a couple of the overpass heading East. Keefer stated he would pass that information along to the street department.
Keefer: City Manager Bill Keefer read a statement to the governing body and the public. He submitted his resignation and stated that with a heavy heart he has accepted a position as City Manager in another community. Keefer stated his resignation will be effective Friday, May 17th at 5 p.m. honoring the two month notification per his employment contract and allowing time to work with staff and the council to begin the transition to a new City Manager. Keefer stated Augusta has been his home for over 16 ½ years and he appreciates the opportunity the City of Augusta has afforded him. He thanked the many loyal and dedicated city employees who he has worked with and their resolve to do their best to serve the citizens of Augusta.
Adjourn: At 8:47 p.m. Reavis made a motion to adjourn. Childers seconded the motion. Motion carried without opposition.