Burnet delays road work in favor of healthy EDC budget

STAFF WRITER JARED FIELDS

Burnet City Council

Burnet City Secretary Kelly Dix gave the oath of office to Mayor Crista Goble Bromley during the May 14 regular City Council meeting. City Council members Tres Clinton (left) and Paul Farmer also were sworn in during the meeting. Staff photo by Jared Fields

Burnet City Council and Economic Development Corporation Board members managed to juggle three projects and come away with an agreeable solution May 14.

During a joint workshop, the two groups discussed issues stemming from higher-than-expected bids for road and utilities on Eastside Commercial Park.

City Manager David Vaughn said bids came in at about $780,000, more than $150,000 higher than anticipated. With the budget for the Badger building renovations continuing to climb well above the original forecast, Vaughn told those at the workshop that a solution was needed to keep a healthy EDC budget intact. As the Badger building costs have surpassed $3 million, and the low Eastside Commercial Park bid was near $780,000, Vaughn said that could put the end-of-year EDC bank account below $250,000.

The city is obligated to finish the road and utilities work by December 6 of this year.

The city’s solution was to take a page out of the recent John Hoover Parkway construction project. The City Council approved a motion to have city staff perform the work on the Eastside Commercial Park extension while delaying scheduled street repairs.

“On John Hoover Parkway, the out-of-pocket cost for material was less than half than the engineer’s estimate for a contractor to do the work,” Vaughn said.

The City Council felt similarly confident about potential cost-savings of this project, with Vaughn estimating “$300,000 at minimum” in savings with this option.

In other action, City Council:

• approved a $100,000 pledge to the YMCA of the Highland Lakes at Galloway-Hammond to use toward construction of a Teen Center. The YMCA expects the total cost to be about $450,000 for a 2,500- to 3,000-square-foot facility. The city’s pledge is for $20,000 per year over the next five years.

• approved a motion for removing the remaining tree trunks and roots that disrupted the walking path of the Jackson Street sidewalk and replace the pavers. The oak trees removed will be replaced with crepe myrtle trees. The motion called for the cost of the project not to exceed $49,999.99.

• administered the oath of office to Mayor Crista Goble Bromley and City Council members Tres Clinton and Paul Farmer. Cindia Talamantez was also to be sworn in but was absent from the meeting.

jared@thepicayune.com

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