Q. How has 2019 been for the city of El Dorado Springs?
The second phase of the Sidewalk to the Future was our biggest project this year. The contract was for $345,587. It went from Hwy. 32 on Hospital Road to Park Street then north of the school about four blocks.
A culvert extension at the creek north of Fields Blvd. gives students a way to cross the creek without walking into the roadway, which really increases safety.
While we are on the subject of sidewalks, I want to remind everybody we have a program where if a property owner wants a new sidewalk in front of their property, the city will provide the labor to remove the old sidewalk and build a form for the new sidewalk. The property owner will only be responsible for the cost of the concrete.
A yard of concrete will make a 4 ft. wide sidewalk, 4 inches thick, about 21 lineal feet. Concrete is about $110 a yard. So, if you have 100 feet of sidewalk to replace, it will only cost you about $550.
On the streets, we did about 12 blocks of chip and seal this year and about three blocks of cold mix. We hoped to get a lot more done this year, but had a wet year. We’ll probably try to double down on that next year.
On tearing down dilapidated buildings, we had nine demolished this year. Some were torn down by the city and some by the property owners. This next year we will have somewhere between 10 and 15 on that list.
A couple more years and we will have most of the dilapidated houses torn down.
It’s really nice when we have cooperation from the property owners. It probably saves them money as well.
We contracted a new carnival for the Picnic. It’s Fun Time Shows out of Doniphan, MO.
The council passed a resolution to transfer the library property to the Library Board so they can build a new library. We won’t actually make the transfer until they hire a contractor. The reason for transfer of title is because they don’t want to spend money on property they don’t own.
The county and the city hired a new economic development director. Kaysinger Basin Regional Planning Commission will issue a press release soon.
We received a grant for a new taxi from the Missouri Department of Transportation.
We are in the process of working with the Department of Conservation to turn Nine Wonders Lake into a fishing lake. The Department will pay for 75% of the infrastructure improvements. At this time we are anticipating a boat ramp, parking lot, fishing dock and spillway improvements.
We maintained our fire department rating at a 4, the same as the City of Nevada with a full time fire department. Someone in the rural area said it saved him a thousand dollars on his fire insurance.
A company is revising our municipal codes. Once completed, the municipal codes will be available on the city website. The project will take about 10 to 12 months..
On our electrical grid, we added several capacitor banks. They help regulate voltage on the distribution system. It will save the city about $15,000 a year. The capital cost was approximately $18,000. This was paid by a grant from the Missouri Public Utility Alliance.
Q. How’s the sewer plant working?
We added two more reed beds at the sewer plant bringing the total to eight for which it was designed. The reeds digest the sludge and turn it back into a compost material.
Before the reed beds, we had to haul the sludge and spread it on farmer’s property almost daily. It was pretty well one person’s full time job.
We have to burn the reeds off every fall.
Q. How many employees does the city have?
I believe it is 45 fulltime.
Q. Are you at full staff?
We are looking for a police officer and we are looking for a sewer plant foreman.