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Brandt submits low bid for sewer work

Project will divert water from Dwight Road ditch

Published: Friday, March 23, 2012 5:00 p.m. CDT • Updated: Tuesday, March 27, 2012 5:08 p.m. CDT

The Morris City Council, at Monday's regular meeting, accepted Brandt Builders' bid of $37,458 for the Dwight Road Storm Sewer project.

Brandt Builders' was the lowest of the nine bids the city received. The highest bid was $70,718.

As part of stipulations for a grant the city received previously to redo Illinois Avenue, the city had to take jurisdiction of Dwight Road, which was the old Illinois 47, from Pine Bluff Road to the Illinois River. With that, the city is required to maintain the ditches.

The area the city maintains is very flat, and consistently gets drainage buildup and is costly to clean out. The city is going to divert the drainage west to the Illinois River pits on Material Service's property.

Last summer, the council approved designated Motor Fuel Tax dollars for the project, but it took a long time to get an easement agreement with corporate Material Service.

Because the project is being paid for entirely with Motor Fuel Tax dollars, the bid also needs to be approved by the state, said Alderman Drew Muffler, chairman of the Street and Alley Committee that recommended the bid to the full council. The city now has to wait for a response from the state.

"This is a little more than $20,000 less than we thought," said Alderman Bill Martin.

Mayor Richard Kopczick said the council originally approved a resolution to use up to $90,000 of Motor Fuel Tax dollars.

Alderman Randy Larson said this project was going to save the city money because Public Works was not going to have to be out there clearing out the drainage build up all the time.

In another city project, it was announced that a mandatory pre-bid meeting will be held at 10 a.m. March 30 at the Morris Municipal Services Facility for interior work on the snow removal equipment building at the Morris Municipal Airport.

Bids will be opened at 10 a.m. April 4, also at the Morris facility.

The building is a 4,800-square-foot structure attached to the Morris Municipal Airport's current corporate hangar. Half of the addition is a garage and the other half an office area, including bathrooms and a pilot lounge.

In other business, the council approved allowing the city to participate in the Illinois Joint Purchasing Program.

The state has a number of vendors it negotiates prices with on products that it then allows participating municipalities to use, said Kopczick Friday. Products range from vehicles and heavy equipment to office products, he said.

The city has participated in the program in the past, but it now requires the council to approve a resolution to participate. This does not require the city purchase through the program, but now it has the ability to.

The council also approved an ordinance banning the planting of any species of ash trees in the city's right-of-ways or parks.

In October, the city was informed that an Emerald Ash Borer beetle was found in a tree in Morris. The mayor was told then within about seven years all of the city's ash trees will probably be dead.

The beetle reached North America in 2002, according to the department of agriculture's website, www.illinoiseab.com. The green beetle is about the size of a penny. The adult beetles are not the problem, it's the larvae. The larvae eat the inner bark, which is between the bark and wood and therefore disrupt the Ash tree's ability to transport water and nutrients.

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