Saturday , August 19 2017
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Plant Bids Exceed Estimates

Amended Bond Resolution Approved

By Jann Wiswall

The Village of Ellicottville’s board accepted the low bid of $4,228,000 for contractor services for the new wastewater treatment plant at its July 13 meeting. The contractor, STC Construction, expects to begin work as soon as next week.

Electrical contractor bids for the project, which are expected to be in the $1.5 million range, will be awarded next month.

The original estimated cost of the project was $4.9 million, and that is the amount of a bond resolution that was approved by the Village board earlier this year.

Because the project now exceeds that amount, the board amended the bond resolution to authorize borrowing a total of $5,763,000.

In May, the board rejected all bids because they even more significantly exceeded engineering estimates. Village engineer Mike Smith, who also is CEO of Nussbaumer & Clarke, Inc. — the firm that designed the plant and wrote the bid specifications – went back to the drawing board to revise the scope of work and rebid the project last month.

At the July meeting, Smith assured the board that the plant will meet the Village’s needs for the long term. He also walked the board through a revised cost analysis of ongoing operational expenses and concluded that the new plant will use less energy, which should save the Village money over the long term. Those savings, combined with the fact that the Village was approved for a 0% loan, should still mean that taxpayers will not see a plant-related increase in their sewer bills.

In other business, the Village board is reviewing a revised comprehensive plan that was drafted by the Village Planning Board. Residents may review the plan by visiting the village clerk’s office; the plan also will be posted on the Village website sometime in the next month. A public hearing will be scheduled as well, probably for the September village board meeting.

The board also is reviewing a number of proposed zoning changes. Further review and consultation with the planning board is in process.

And, several new ordinances are being considered to address some ongoing issues with brush and trash removal and noise complaints. The village expects to establish stiffer fines for noise violations and is looking at additional ways to enforce them. All of these issues will require public hearings.

The next meeting of the Village Board will be held on Monday, August 10 at 6 p.m. in the village/town hall. All are welcomed.

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