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Special city council meeting: the devil’s in the details

by Bill Knowles

WALSENBURG– A special city council meeting was called on Fri. Aug. 6.  The council needed to take action on costs for work the city has agreed to do in the development of the new grocery store on north Walsen.

    The council voted 8-0, with council member James England absent, agreeing to a $22,661 increase in expenditures for construction of a retaining wall along the north side of the store’s property.  The original estimate called for $90,065 to be spent on the retaining wall.  Workers had to cut deeper along the north side of the property to get the correct grade for a level building.  This changed the dimensions of the retaining wall, making it  ten feet high rather than eight feet.  The wall will run from Walsen to Albert along Maple.

    Also, the council looked at the plan for a left turn lane from Walsen to Pine along the south side of the property.  The Colorado Department of Trans- portation still needs to approve that plan.

    Council members Dave Mockmore and James Moore were appointed, on two 6-1 votes, to be part of the interview committee for the finance director’s position.  Council member Craig Lessar was the dissenting vote.  He stated that the money for the position isn’t budgeted yet so there’s no way a finance director should be hired.  Other council members argued that the money saved during the time a finance director hasn’t been paid can move the process forward until funds can be budgeted for the position.  The position was opened when Krystal Vigil resigned from the job last July. 

    The council also voted 8-0 to approve an agreement spending $24,850 for impaction and concrete testing of the material being used in the expansion of the Wastewater Treatment Facility (WWTF).  The approval is subject to a review by the city’s attorney.

    CTL/Thompson from Denver is the company testing the fresh, site-cast concrete in the footings and foundation of the WWTF.  CTL will also be conducting geotechnical testing as well as conducting observations of the fill material.

    City Council also voted 8-0 to move the Oct. 18 finance committee meeting to Tues. Oct. 19 just before the regular council meeting.  A Colorado Municipal League meeting is scheduled in Walsenburg on Mon. Oct. 18 with the city acting as host.  The CML, a nonprofit organization, represents member cities and towns in matters that come before the state and federal governments.  They also provide broad information services to help municipal leaders in managing their governments.

    The City Council then went into executive session.

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