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City council awards bid for stump grinding

WORTHINGTON -- The city council awarded a bid for stump grinding during its regular meeting Monday night.

There were multiple bids received, and the bids were opened earlier Monday afternoon.

Prairie Landscaping of Worthington was awarded the bid for $41,034.

"We opened the bids at 1:30 this afternoon," Director of Public Works Jim Eulberg said during a meeting that lasted less than 30 minutes. "We received five bids, the low bid was from Prairie Landscaping, Allen Drost of Worthington. I was a little concerned with the difference in price. I spent some time after the opening to talk with him. He was comfortable with his bid and confident he could be done by the end of September as the specifications state."

The next lowest bid was $70,074 from Gourley Tree and Stump Removal. The highest bid came from Ceres Environmental Services, Inc. -- the company who has handled much of the clean-up for the city -- at $98,269.44.

Council member Scott Nelson asked how many stumps will have to be removed.

"There are 776," Eulberg said, before pausing, "approximately."

"That's a heck of a number, isn't it?" mayor Alan Oberloh asked.

Eulberg explained the work covers more than just removing the stump.

"It's also for topsoil and for them to seed it," he said. "We provide the seed, but they will do the seeding."

Council member Mike Kuhle asked where the money would be coming from.

"Those funds would come from the $200,000 that we have and current reserves the city would have," city administrator Craig Clark said.

Clark explained there is $89,000 that is not eligible from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the total project amount is about $2.1 million.

Kuhle asked if the out-of-pocket costs would be above the $200,000 emergency reserves.

"Depending upon how the state comes in with the unmet need, I hope not," Clark said, pointing to the $250,000 the state legislature passed for unmet need for the five counties. "I'm going to submit replacement trees, as an example, as an unmet need. Will the state put that forward as an eligible expense of the $250,000? We'll have a lot of expenses over that $250,000 they have for five counties eligible for replacement trees. We've addressed about 25 percent of the trees with the $100,000 we've appropriated to reach the trees that were in the higher traffic areas."

The meeting began with Oberloh welcoming honorary council member Robert Bristow.

The council approved the first reading of a proposed ordinance amending the city code in regard to animals. The proposed ordinance clarified that rabbits are not included in the definition of farm animal.

In the first reading of the same code, the council agreed to require the registration of all operators of farmer's markets, solicitors and any person except from the licensing requirements. It also prohibited the display, sale, trade of giving away of a live animal.

The council awarded the bid for bituminous overlay. The projects consists of verlay of Fox Farm Road from Crailsheim to the west, East 9th Street from 11th Street to Clary Street, 13th Street from East 9th Street to 8th Street and placement of a skim overlay on Summit Avenue near Knollwood Drive.

The bid was awarded to McLaughlin & Schulz, Inc., Marshall, for a total bid of $253,882.75.