Western Nebraska Observer - Observations all along the line - Kimball & the Southern Panhandle First

Council votes to upgrade waste water treatment plant


June 29, 2017

The Kimball City Council approved the replacement of electrical panels at the local waste water treatment plant at a cost of $42,000.

Late in May an electrical storm caused damage to the panels, according to City Administrator Dan Dean.

“We have since been directing the waste into our lagoon,” he said. “We would like to eliminate that as quickly as possible, but we are not discharging – which is critical.”

Two bids were received from Municipal Automation & Control, the company that has been a supplier to the City of Kimball for years. The first bid was to simply replace the damaged equipment, but the second, and recommended, bid includes an upgrade.

“For years we have wanted to update (that equipment),” Dean said.

The total cost for the recommended upgrade is $32,085, but Paul Quicke, Wastewater Treatment Plant Supervisor, suggested that the pump and valve controllers for the VFD also be replaced, at an additional cost of just more than $10,000.

Insurance does not pay for replacement value, instead they pay for current value. Since the equipment currently in use was manufactured in 1979, insurance payments don’t cover the cost.

Jim Cederburg, President of the Board of Public Works, reminded the council that nearly $20,000 is available and was set aside for this purpose following the sale of a piece of land near the waste water treatment facility.

Council approved the bid and directed staff to order the necessary parts and have them replaced as soon as possible to avoid discharging waste.

Activities at the Janicek Dam are creeping forward, as council received and approved clarification regarding the remote control race car track proposed for that area.

Z & S Construction offered to build the track and maintain it while it is in use, but would not be in charge of running it. Additionally, if the track needed to be removed in the future, the local company would be in charge of demolishing it and repairing the space back to original state.

Ruth Knicely, a representative of the Fritz Memorial Dog Park board, presented the council with sketches of the dog park planned for that area. The sketches include a parking area as well as a large dog space and a small dog space.

“The parking lot should be shared with the race track and the dog park,” Knicely said. “We can have the parking lot in between.”

Council gave their approval for the plans and hope to see the dog park progress soon. As council begins the budget process soon, members encouraged Knicely to prepare a request for funds prior to the finalization of the upcoming budget.

As far as parks go, local business owner, Heather Entingh, approached the council regarding the disrepair of the basketball courts at Gotte Park.

“There couldn’t have been anything done with it in the last 20 years,” she said. “I guess our question is where, if any, is the funding for parks in this town?”

She further stated that as the outdated equipment breaks in either of the parks, it is removed but is not replaced with new equipment. She further stated that there is nothing in the parks for children with special needs.

“It is just really a sad situation,” she said. “I haven’t seen any new equipment since I moved here.”

Entingh questioned if the City has anyone able to write grants for park funding and then offered to research grants and apply for any that would offer funds to repair the fence, courts and equipment at the park with council’s blessings.

Other actions taken by the board include:

-Approved Echo Kizzair’s application for corporation manager for the Kimball Event Center.

-Approved amendments to the employee handbook.

-Approved the Mayor’s appointment of Josh Enevoldsen to replace Penny Merryfield on the Planning Commission board.

-Approved the sale of property, legally described as Block 1, Lot 1 Frederick Addition to the City of Kimball, to Eatmon’s Well Service. The property, a small tract, is adjacent to property owned by the local company.

-Approved a Main Street Design and Improvement Grant to IOS-LB Foster for signage and awning totaling 50 percent of the total cost in the amount of $2,850.25.


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