Meeting: Jasper Board of Public Works

The Jasper Board of Public Works and Safety met Tuesday and:

• Heard Jasper Mayor Dean Vonderheide proclaim the week of April 12-18 as National Public Safety Telecommunicators Week. Vonderheide thanked telecommunicators for their critical work and the vital link they provide between those in need and law enforcement and first responders.

• Approved the dedication of public utility and drainage easements around the perimeter of a North Newton Street property owned by EGR LLC.

• Opened quotes for a project that will address drainage issues at the Jasper Arts Center site. The work will repair and install between 100 and 120 feet of storm sewer along the south side of the building’s auditorium, reconnect two downspouts on that side of the building and fix a basement drain that is currently not draining. Knies Construction of Jasper submitted the low quote of $11,573, and was awarded the project, pending approval of Arts Director Kyle Rupert.

• Heard that the city has received a Community Crossings matching grant through the Indiana Department of Transportation for improvements to Portersville Road. The matching grant is in the amount of $264,162.50. The board approved awarding that project — which will include the widening of Portersville Road, the installation and replacement of storm sewers and the installation of a pedestrian path — to Love Excavating of Huntingburg, who was the low bidder when quotes were opened earlier this year. The total project cost is $347,627.

• Approved Knies Construction of Jasper to complete work on 34th Street at a cost of $144,485. The project includes the widening and installation of curb and gutter along the road, beginning at the city park location and heading west to the ditch line where the Autumn Creek III development is ongoing.

• Discussed a potential resurfacing project that could one day remove center turn lanes along St. Charles Street between Schuetter Road and 29th Street. Vonderheide explained that the city’s safety committee has been looking at ways to keep people from running off the road and damaging property — specifically mailboxes — along the road. Street commissioner Jeff Theising explained that “turn blisters” would be in place at all the intersections in the stretch, if the turn lanes were removed. No action was taken.

• Approved a count of the mileage of the streets the city maintains. The number is used to determine motor vehicle dollars the city receives. A net of 4.77 miles was added to the city’s street inventory.

• Approved contributing $58,558.25 to a project that will extend 32nd Street.

• Approved closing a section of 15th Street near Kundeck street for INDOT to facilitate work near Newton Street. The street will be closed for a few hours today while the southwest curb ramp is dug out, and it will close again later this week when the new curb ramp is poured back in.

• Approved the purchase of 32 air packs and 64 bottles for the Jasper Volunteer Fire Department from 3M Scott Fire & Safety at a cost of $205,600.

• Approved removing the probationary status from JVFD firefighter Eric Bailey’s title.

• Approved extending a conditional offer of employment to a new, probationary telecommunicator.

• Approved Theising to seek quotes for pavement preservation projects, including microsurface and liquid road work.

• Approved junking a hard drive for the street department’s camera surveillance system, which went bad.

• Approved a low bid from Ruxer Ford for a 2020 model one-ton truck. The vehicle’s cost is $38,488. Also approved seeking bids for a snow plow for the truck.

• Approved purchasing vibratory compactor plates for a total of $4,213.91 from Hamlin Equipment of Evansville.

• Approved Theising to seek quotes for a mini-excavator for the street department.

• Approved a new contract between the parks department and Four Rivers, a company that the city partners with to schedule van rides. The contract is set to not exceed $27,000, and because the city is reimbursed per rider, a parks department representative said the city usually gets back about $20,000 annually.

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