After bids came in more than $40,000 higher than estimated, the Millwood council voted unanimously to reject the bids and postpone sidewalk improvements on Buckeye Avenue.
“They came in higher than we were hoping,” Melissa Cleveland of Welch Comer said about the bids. “Now council has a decision to make.”
The state Transportation Improvement Board awarded a $261,000 grant to the city for the project last fall. The city has until 2014 to use the grant. Cleveland said it is possible that the board may cover some of the higher-than-expected construction costs.
“It sounded like the likelihood of them covering the overage was high,” Cleveland said. “But they couldn’t give 100 percent commitment at this point.”
Cleveland suggested combining the sidewalk improvement project with next year’s Buckeye waterline project and putting the combined project out to bid in the winter.
“You’ll get an economy of scale that way,” Cleveland said. “Meaning both projects being more work together may get lower bids.”
The sidewalk project includes the construction of 1,950 feet of sidewalk along the north side of Buckeye between Argonne and Vista roads.
In other business:
• Council approved a six-month moratorium on implementing I-502, an initiative legalizing marijuana, in the city.
The moratorium allows the city time to research options on how the effects of I-502 fit into the zoning requirements and regulatory framework.
“What we are asking you is for a moratorium to allow staff to come up with the set of rules … rules that are reflective of Millwood,” City Attorney Brian Werst said.
“The purpose of this moratorium is not to be obstructionist, to block, to be problematic,” Werst said. “The purpose of the moratorium is we would really like to have some rules before you in the six months, and we’re planning to do so.”
A public hearing on the moratorium is planned during the September council meeting.
• Council approved an agreement with Millwood Community Presbyterian Church that grants the city a utility easement.
The easement is for a water main located on property the city vacated for the church’s planned $1 million expansion project.
The water main is being redesigned so that it curves out from the planned building.
Originally the city had required that the project contractor replace the water main with a main-in-sleeve line. Liability concerns prompted the redesign.