By Martin J. Kidston
The Havre City Council gathered last night to pass the citys budget and tax levies for the next fiscal year, and to hear engineering options for the First Street water main.
The budget and tax levies were passed without question Monday night, setting the stage for Gaston Engineering, which has been working on options for the replacement of the citys decrepit First Street water main for several months.
Marty Gagnon of Gaston Engineering told the council the engineering firm has conceived three options for replacing the water main. The firm concluded the options after conducting a lengthy testing process on the areas soil and water.
Gagnon told the council that after drill-testing various areas along the mains possible routes, contamination was found at Montana Avenue. Although Gagnon didnt say what the contamination was, it would likely take excavation and treatment. He listed cost for the procedure at around $75,000.
Option one included running a new 16-inch water main down First Street. The new pipe would be laid over the existing 16-inch pipe and covered with a special anti-freezing substance. Cost for option one was $744,365.
Option two included running an 8-inch pipe down First Street and a second 16-inch pipe down Second Street. Cost was estimated at $1,132,955.
Option three included running a 20-inch pipe down First Street, which would tie into the water plants proposed 20-inch output valves. Cost for option three was $800,000.
However, the cost estimates from the engineering firm dont include engineering fees and administrative fees, Annmarie Robinson of Bear Paw Development told the council. She said that no matter what option the city chose, the Treasure State Endowment Program would offer $303,747 toward the replacement of the water main. The city could also apply for an EDA grant, Robinson said, which could pay up to 60 percent of project costs.
The city gave the report to the water and sewer committee with the power to act. The committee will meet at 7:30 p.m. on Oct. 25.
Lotton Construction approached the council and told members that the firm had been hired to extend a water pipe at the Eighth Avenue Christian Church. However, the cost of running the water line in the manner it was done increased costs by $5,000.
Lotton Construction told the council it wants to be reimbursed for the added costs. The request was passed to the water and sewer committee.
The Havre Chamber of Commerce approached the council and told members it has three parcels of property on First Street between Third and Fourth avenues. The Chamber wants to build a park and parking lot at the location, however, an outstanding debt of $1,630 remains on the property. The cost stems from the cleanup and demolition of the Hedstrom-Rundle building.
The council passed the request to both the street and sidewalk committee and the park and recreation committee for review.
The next city council meeting will be held at 8 p.m. on Nov. 8.