Galion City Council held a Special Meeting on July 1. The purpose was to consider Ord. 2014-62, which amends the 2014 appropriations to transfer $75,000 to the Street Improvement Fund.
To explain the need for the transfer, Mayor Tom O’Leary provided council members with a cost summary of the Hesby Drive construction project:
Project Cost Summary
1. Original legislation funding: $1,160,000
2. Original contract amount: $988,211.05
3. Construction engineering: $45,000
4. Adjustments to contract amounts: $4,461
5. Undercuts - Embankment: $28,942.26
6. Undercut - Stone backfill storm sewer: $12,240
7. Burger King conduit: $922.42
8. Chemical stabilization: $122,165.88
9. Burger King drive: $3,280
10. Pizza Hut drive: $5,280
11. Temporary drive to shopping center: $15,000
O’Leary said there was originally $1.1 million appropriated for the project, and the actual contract amount came in under the estimate at $988,211.
Although this resulted in a cushion of $171,788, that amount has eroded due to engineering fees, change orders and embankment work.
The main item city officials were there to discuss was #8, the chemical stabilization for the soil base, estimated at $122,165. This was not in the original project plans and would bring the cost over budget.
“As the roadway was being prepared, the soil was tested by a specialist,” O’Leary informed council. According to him, it was determined the soil would not pass a proof rolling test and the specialist recommended a soil stabilization.
If council approved the legislation, O’Leary said the stabilization could start as soon as next week. He reiterated the need to keep the project moving to have Hesby Drive open by the time the Portland Way bridge is closed.
Council member Jon Kleinknecht asked, “Is that just a situation that they wouldn’t have known until they got to a certain point in the construction?”
“The short answer is probably yes,” O’Leary responded.
Council member Tom Fellner asked what the composition of the soil was and what the chemical stabilization will entail.
The mayor did not know what the composition was, but added there is a soil report that has the details. The stabilization will be similar to what was done with the Portland Way widening project; the contractor will “till in” Portland cement with the soil, in order to create a base for the road.
Additionally, there will be added costs to grade and install drives to connect the parking lots of Burger King and Pizza Hut, which will flank the Hesby Drive entrance. The final item on the cost summary was a temporary drive for the Galion West Shopping Center, off of Heise Park Lane.
Over the last several months, the city had been working with the merchants in the shopping center and the Chamber of Commerce to fund the temporary drive with private dollars. The cost to install it is $15,000.
Despite the effort, the mayor reported that construction has moved quickly and there was not sufficient time for raising the money. “Six months ago I would have said I don’t want to get into building this,” O’Leary commented.
However, access to the stores needs to be maintained. The main drives off of Portland Way North will remain open when the widening project moves into that section, but drivers will need to cross the project area, and traffic will only be able to go north while bridge is closed.
To cover these expenses, a total of $65,572 was needed. City Auditor Brian Treisch explained he was asking for $75,000 instead so that he does not need to return to council for more appropriations.
Treisch further explained the money comes out of unappropriated dollars in the License Tax fund (203). There is nearly $300,000 currently in the fund and it receives approximately $185,000 in revenue each year.
After the discussion, Council member Mike Richart motioned to suspend the rules and pass Ord. 2014-62 as an emergency, seconded by Kleinknecht. The motion passed 6-0 (Council member Sarah Capretta was absent).
The emergency reading of the ordinance then passed unanimously.