By BEN GRAFTON
At a sparsely-attended short meeting on March 10, 2009 the Freeport City Council agreed to have Freeport participate in a proclamation to be issued jointly by Okaloosa, Santa Rosa and Walton counties and all of the municipalities within these counties to welcome and support the F-35 joint strike fighter mission scheduled for Eglin Air Force Base. The basic plan is to have a public signing of the proclamation at a date to be announced.
In other business City Engineer Charles Peters reported that the “punch list” of deficiencies in construction of the city’s sewer plant expansion project has been completed, but as of this date, the contractor has not taken any corrective action. Peters’ will issue a letter to encourage the contractor to take the necessary action to correct the problems.
Peters said the testing of the new No. 7 water well was carried out but the well was unable to meet the design specification flow rate of 1,800 gallons per minute. Corrective work will be done.
Mayor Mickey Marse advised the Council that requests for bids on the easement studies for the extension of the city’s water system to the west of Portland have been sent out. A bid review committee of Marse, and councilmen Earl King and Mark Martin will evaluate the bids for proposed costs, contractor’s experience, understanding of the Eglin AFB process and proposed time schedules. The committee will select the three top bids and bring them to the Council for final selection. The Council noted that time is a most important factor, particularly when the possibility of a drawn-out approval time may be required to get the proposals approved by review officials at Wright-Patterson AFB.
Two bids on work to construct fencing at the practice ball fields near the sewage treatment plant were received. One of these was in the amount of $34,000 and the other was for $44,000. The bids were so high that the Council voted to reject them. A plan to limit the scope of work to backstops and to do the work “in house” will be developed.