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Fox River Crossing, Vine Street Bridge Replacement Among 2014 Plans For City of Kahoka

By Mike Scott

The City of Kahoka and Clark County will cooperate on the replacement of the bridge on North Vine, north of the cemetery. As the above picture shows, it has no side rails and is crumbling.  The bridge is at the edge of Kahoka’s city limits.

The City of Kahoka and Clark County will cooperate on the replacement of the bridge on North Vine, north of the cemetery. As the above picture shows, it has no side rails and is crumbling.  The bridge is at the edge of Kahoka’s city limits.

bridge 1

Initial engineering plans for the replacement waterline crossing of the Fox River are now in the hands of Kahoka officials.

The waterline, which brings water to Kahoka from the water generation plant in Wayland, has been exposed by erosion of the Fox River’s bank.  Plans call for the contractor to re-lay the pipeline under the river, and replace the original concrete pipeline for approximately 1800 feet through the swampy area west of the Fox River.

On Monday, January 13, Steve Hausner of the engineering firm French Reneker and Associates of Fairfield, Iowa, gave  to City Assistant Jim Sherwood.

At Monday night’s meeting of the Kahoka Board of Aldermen, Hausner told the council, “We’re looking to go to bid early in February, and open bids on March 7 so you can review them at the March council meeting.”

Hausner suggested a November deadline for completing the project.

“The bigger construction window you can allow, the better for the bidder.  They can work it into their schedules, and you should get a better bid,” Hausner said.

Alderman Larry Young questioned Hausner about problems with several other recent projects.

“It seems we have some kind of problem with every engineering project.  Something gets left out, or needs changed, and it alway ends up costing more money,” Young said.

Hauser said he would take note of that.

The council finally reached settlement with the insurance company concerning the sewer jetter claim.  The city’s jetter was totalled in an accident.   The city will receive $10,400, and the insurance will also waive the $1000 deductible.

“Let’s be done with this,” said Alderman Greg McVeigh.

The council also formally accepted a sidewalk replacement policy.  For property owners who wish to replace their sidewalks, the city will pay for labor and property owners will pay for materials, as long as the sidewalk is built to city specifications.

“We’ve been following this policy, but we never have formally adopted it,” said Mayor Jerry Webber.

The council also approved specifications for sidewalks.

Snow removal became a topic of discussion.  Mayor Webber noted that one of the truck-mounted snow plows is not in good shape, the board agreed to seek bids for a new plow.

Media editor Mike Scott asked why the city did not plow all the way to the curbs in the downtown area during the last heavy snow.  Aldermen asked  when plowing crews start plowing, and were told it is usually the police department who notifies them when it is getting slick.

Alderman Young also suggested that all the plows have a printed checklist of priorities, including the ambulance garage and  fire station and designated streets.

The council considered a request from Clark County Road and Bridge head Troy Kiger.  Kiger suggested that the city and county cooperate to replace the bridge on Vine Street, north of the cemetery.  The bridge is on the edge of the city, and is jointly maintained by the city and county.

The council agreed to pay for the materials to replace the bridge with a 24 ft wide bridge at a cost of approximately $25,000. The county will pay for the construction.

“That road gets a lot of traffic, including truck traffic,” said Mayor Webber.

In other business, the board:

-Heard a report that street shed will start soon, as we are next on the contractor’s list.

-Discussed clean up of the condemned building on the west side of the square.  Police Chief Bill Conger has not been able to contact the primary owner.

-Approved a building permit for Exchange Bank,  a demolition permit for Exchange Bank to take down the former Affordable Auto building, and a moving permit for Wiss and Wiss to move the metal building from the site.

-Approved a resolution to object to non-local control of municipal assets.

-Agreed to get bids to replace the box on the water department truck.

-City Attorney April Wilson reported that the lawsuit over the “alleged alley” between Jefferson and Martin Streets between Clark and Court Streets had been won by Bill Bergman, but Wynetta Fishback has filed for a new trial.

-Wilson also reported that KCDI loans could be used for public use such as a fire truck or airport hangars.

-Wilson also reported she has contacted the Houston Trust to possibly pay for the new playground equipment in the City Park downtown.

-Jim Sherwood reported the city does not have a “net metering” policy in place, which is required by the state.  If someone has solar or wind power, then they would receive a credit for electricity generated that exceeded their usage.

-Police Chief Conger reported 124 calls for service in December, including 64 traffic stops and 8 citations issued

-Alderman Jeff Wood noted that weekly reports from city department heads are “getting fewer and fewer”, and that he would like to see them all every week.