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By DAVID CAMPHOUSE
At its regular May meeting, Barry’s city council approved the community’s appropriation ordinance for the fiscal year, which runs from May 1, 2022, to April 30, 2023.
According to City Administrator Jeff Hogge, the appropriation ordinance is the culmination of months of budgeting work conducted by city staff and officials.
“We had been crunching the numbers for quite some time,” Hogge said. “This was the final product.”
The city’s approved budget contained in the appropriations ordinance is $1,623,970.94, however the budget could increase if the city receives grant funds during the fiscal year.
The council also approved a bid to chip and seal streets.
Two bids were received for the work from Illinois Valley Paving and Diamond Construction. The low bid from Diamond was awarded at a cost of $38,846.10.
Under the contract, Diamond Construction will chip and seal Mason Street from Hull to Bainbridge and the entire length of Pratt, from Ill. Route 106 to Greene.
According to Hogge, city public works employees will prep the areas to expedite the chip/seal work, saving the city money.
“Our guys will go in and level things out, so Diamond can just come in and roll,” Hogge said. “They could be done in as little as two days.”
In response to Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (IEPA) guidance, Barry’s council approved a revised groundwater ordinance to more explicitly spell out the city’s groundwater rules.
“We wanted to make sure that we had it stated correctly,” Hogge said. “Basically, it says that you can’t buy a house and drill a well in town. If you’re in the city limits, you have to be on city water.”
The ordinance revision was needed, Hogge said, before a third and final inspection of the ground beneath the former service station at the corner of Ill. 106 and County Rd. A/Bainbridge Street could be conducted.
The inspection of the property’s ground is required before the parcel may change hands. The property is being sought by the owners of Pittsfield’s Brewed Coffee House & Eatery to open a satellite location of the business.
The council had planned to review bids for installation of new HVAC equipment at the city’s museum, but bids were received too late to be reviewed at the meeting. The matter was tabled.
In addition, the council discussed a planned interconnect valve between the city’s water system and the county’s rural water district. Hogge said that planning for the proposed interconnection is still in the works, and many logistical considerations need to be addressed before any work would commence.
“That’s an ongoing thing,” Hogge said. “The ball is in the county’s court as they are looking at all the easements that will be needed to make the connection.”
The water interconnection would serve as a back-up for both water systems, ensuring an ample supply of potable water in the event of a mechanical issue with either system’s wells.