Meeting: Jasper Utility Service Board

The Jasper Utility Service Board met Monday and:

• Opened the lone bid for the inspection of city water tanks as well as the city’s clearwell component. The quote came from Liquid Engineering Corporation of Billings, Montana, and the work will cost $3,995. Another quote was submitted via email from Midco Diving and Marine Services of Rapid City, South Dakota, but that quote was not accepted. Liquid Engineering’s quote was approved.

• Opened bids for a sewer jet truck from Best Equipment Company of Indianapolis and Brown Equipment Company of Fort Wayne. Brown Equipment supplied the low net quote at $209,000.00 after trade-in, and the quotes were taken under advisement.

• Heard from Tim Doersam, the city’s gas and water manager, that hydrant flushing across the city is halfway complete.

• Approved a gas rate change recommendation. Under the changes, some fixed rates would increase, but other variable costs would decrease and offset the difference, and the average homeowner customer would see “pretty much a wash,” over the course of the year, General Utilities Manager Bud Hauersperger said in March. The recommendation now goes to the Jasper Common Council for final approval before potentially going into effect this summer.

• Approved waiving the city’s 10% upcharge on the utility parts and supplies for six LED light poles that were purchased and installed in the River Centre parking lot. The total invoice for the work was $33,421.21, but $2,110.91 will be deducted from that total. The parking lot is located on city property.

• Heard that each utility department has compiled continuity of operations plans.

• Heard that Taft law firm of Indianapolis has sent a letter to Green Earth Technologies of Wilmington, Delaware, regarding the deconstruction of the old power plant. A letter of concern will also be submitted to the Indiana Department of Environmental Management addressing the city’s concern with how the company conducted the project and its closeout. In March, the board enlisted Taft to track down documentation of potentially hazardous materials as well as construction and demolition materials removed from the power plant site. The plant was deconstructed and salvaged by Green Earth Technologies, who has not supplied the documentation.

• Heard from City Attorney Renee Kabrick that for the month of May, the City of Jasper “is going to make every effort to have its public meetings via Zoom” video conferencing. The meetings will be open to board members and the public, and up to 100 total participants can attend. The May Utility Service Board meeting will follow this format at 7 p.m. on Monday, May 18.

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