Meeting: Jasper Utility Service Board

The Jasper Utility Service Board met Monday and:

• Accepted a quote for a roof replacement for $65,810, pending approval of specifications.

• Heard that Scott Merkel was hired as a new filter operator.

• Gave permission for the gas and water departments to hire a permanent part-time custodian to replace Merkel. It also gave permission to hire two seasonal summer maintenance employees and another water filter operator due to retirement of the chief lab technician.

• Heard an update about lateral line inspections in homes around the Holy Family area. Wastewater Manager Ed Hollinden said that out of the 38 homes that gave permission to be inspected, all failed, which Hollinden said was about what he and his crew expected. Those homes will have 90 days from the inspection to fix whatever problems need to be addressed.

• Heard from Business Office Manager Ashley Kiefer that city utility bills can now be paid via credit card, which has been in the works for years. On March 16, customers with valid emails should have received an email with an option to make payment online, she said. The city also hopes to get a smartphone app and a text-to-pay option in the future.

• Heard from Kiefer that some of the city’s software will be moved to the Cloud within the next few weeks for extra security and efficiency.

• Heard an update on the Legacy Living Center water line extension project. General Manager of Utilities Bud Hauersperger said the design for the project is done and will be bid by Legacy Living.

• Approved a proposal from EVunited, an electric vehicle charging company, for equipment and service agreements for electric vehicle charging stations. These stations will likely be installed within a month or so, Hauersperger said.

• Approved the replacement of a City Hall server.

• Approved a resolution regarding an economic development rider incentive with Indiana Municipal Power Agency. Larger customers who reach a certain kilowatt requirement will receive a discount to incentivize growth in the IMPA service territory.

• Heard from Mayor Dean Vonderheide that all city employees who attend board meetings will have to receive the COVID-19 vaccine before masks can be removed at city meetings. “The future is still dependent on our actions,” he told the board.

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