An expansion and renovation of the Burlington Animal Shelter could get underway this summer.
The city council voted 3-2 to hire Myers Construction to do the work. The $820,000 bid from the firm out of Sperry, Iowa was the lowest of the three received by the city.
Burlington will split the cost of the project with the Des Moines County Humane Society. The organization has raised more than $500,000 for the shelter since its fundraising campaign began in 2010.
City Manager Jim Ferneau says Burlington will have to borrow money to cover its share. He anticipates that will increase the property tax rate by two-to-three cents.
Alderman Shane McCampbell voted against the proposal. He expressed concerns about whether borrowing the money for the animal shelter would lead to lay-offs.
Ferneau would not go that far, but he says every financial decision affects future discussions.
He says the recently acquired Burlington Armory will be used as a temporary home for the animal shelter once the work gets underway.
Burlington is moving ahead with plans to borrow about $6.9-million for several sewer-related projects.
The city will use about half of the bond issue to separate a portion of Burlington’s combined sanitary and storm-water sewer system. The project is required to meet environmental standards set forth by the EPA.
Another $1-million will be used to expand the wastewater treatment plant.
The city council has accepted W.L. Miller’s bid of roughly $525,000 to resurface about four miles of city streets. The list of streets includes portions of Haskell Road, Park Avenue, Conrad Court, and Plane Street.
The winning bid came in a couple hundred thousand dollars below original estimates, so more streets will be added as warranted.
W.L. Miller says it will be able to meet labor requirements that 90% of its workforce for the project will come from Iowa.