Bid awarded, work on water/sewer projects to start soon

The Jefferson city council at its Aug. 26 meeting accepted a bid of $450,670 from J & K Contracting of Ames for water/sewer work on three projects, including extending water and sewer lines to the Wild Rose Jefferson site and on N. Mulberry north of Highway 30, as well as relocating a water line on Wall St.

City engineer John Milligan noted that he received only one bid for the job, but that he was comfortable with J & K’s qualifications for the job. He said the company has done projects more difficult than what will be done in Jefferson, and that it has a good list of projects completed. The bid is $21,000 more than (but within 5 percent) of the pre-bid estimate.

The city will be reimbursed by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources for the Wall St project.

Work will begin on the project in mid-September and be completed by mid-November, Milligan said. Water will be available to the Wild Rose site at that time, but more infrastructure, including a new lift station, will be needed for sewer/sanitary service.

Milligan said another a bid letting for the second phase of the sewer/sanitary portion will be held in January.

Total cost of improving infrastructure to support the casino development is between $1.5 and $2 million. The area is in a TIF (tax increment financing) district, and the city plans to use tax dollars generated by the increased property tax revenue to pay for the infrastructure improvements. Wild Rose Jefferson will add an estimated $22.5 million in taxable valuation to the city. City administrator Mike Palmer said the cost of infrastructure improvements would be recouped by the city in about two years.

The improvements will serve other potential development in the TIF district, including the industrial park south of Syngenta. The fact that infrastructure is already in place will play a role in whatever incentives might be offered to potential businesses in the future.

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