Ground tank approved
The Washington City Council Tuesday approved a bid to begin work on the above-ground one million gallon water tank to replace the existing tank, which is about 100 years old and in disrepair.
No comments were made during a public hearing regarding the acceptance of the blueprints for the facility. During the discussion of the blueprints, council member Bob Shellmyer expressed concern that he had spoken with seven towns that had built a dual-chambered tank — which is what Washington is building — and only two had indicated that they would do it again. The dual chamber is about $300,000 more expensive. Water plant superintendent Chad McCleary said he didn’t believe those cities were using the water tank in the same manner as Washington.
“If they are using it for bulk storage and distribution, it is totally different than how we are using our system,” McCleary said.
He said Washington’s tank is used as part of the treatment. He also explained the water movement through the two chambers helps distribute treatment chemicals.
One of the main reasons for the dual chamber is that one half can be shut down for maintenance while the other half is still in use. Rob Baker from Fox Engineering said that this would increase the longevity of the tank. Shellmyer said that many of the towns he had spoken to indicated they never clean the tanks. McCleary said this is “problematic” and the tanks should be cleaned at least every three years and inspected at least every two years. The Department of Natural Resources prefers yearly inspections.
The engineer’s estimate for the project, including the options of demolishing the existing tank and masonry cladding was $1,660,000. The lowest bid was from Natgun Corporation of Wakefield, Mass., for $1,622,088. The only other bid was for $2,030,000.
In other business, the council:
• received its fiscal year 2013 audit;
• endorsed an application to the Washington County Riverboat Foundation for the Washington Tree Committee;
• approved a fireworks permit for the Washington 175th Celebration;
• approved a resolution requesting the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission not grant a gaming license to a facility in Linn County;
• held a public hearing on the 2014 streets pre-levy. No comment was made. A tax was then levied for payment thereof;
• no comment was received on the annual budget. The council then approved the budget;
• approved the second reading of an ordinance on drug paraphernalia;
• approved the second reading of an ordinance on floodplain management;
• moved the time of council meetings to 6 p.m. on the first and third Tuesdays of the month; and
• approved a resolution authorizing assessment to taxes.