LaFayette, engineering firm hash out differences
- Last Updated on Friday, 13 July 2012 14:59
- Written by John A. Ballentine
President Pro Tem Greg Bartley opened the monthly Village meeting stating, “I would like to thank Carl Peve and the board for the water tower project and I’m very pleased with the results.”
Bruner, Cooper, & Zuck representative Mike Greenlief spoke next to the Village board about the final bill for the tower project due his firm. Last month’s meeting left the board questioning the charges because of the way it was presented and explained to them at that time.
Engineer Greenlief brought an outline of the project which was utilized to break down into steps the costs of the project from beginning to end. It explained the estimated cost compared to actual cost and the loan amounts. The amounts applied for and why they were designated toward specific costs were in the outline.
For example, the total cost estimated equaled $337,710 to repair and refurbish the village water tower, but the actual cost amounted to $262,852. This calculated to a difference of approximately $74,000.
After each line item was explained it came down to the final $4,509.58 charge of Bruner, Cooper, & Zuck and $3,227.06 remaining in the project account. The Village had asked last month for a specific explanation of the final charge, instead of just being presented with a $4,509.58 bill.
A mildly heated exchange then occurred between the board and Mr. Greenlief when the explanation was given. President Pro Tem Bartley informed Mr. Greenlief that, “We will be looking at other engineering firms in the future for projects.” Bartley continued with, “I don’t appreciate it!” referring to conversations he had with other Bruner, Cooper, & Zuck representatives outside of village meetings that were off the record. The President Pro Tem felt the Village was being treated poorly due to what was said in those conversations, to put it mildly.
Mr. Greenlief diplomatically agreed at this point in the conversation to compromise on the final invoice’s charges and it was agreed between the two parties to pay the engineering firm $1,212.82 in a final payment of the water tower project.
The next agenda item was an apology and presentation from the CPA firm of Douglas W. Irwin & Co., Ltd. representative Ashley Dana. Referring to the Village audit of the water tower project, Ms. Dana stated, “I promise this will not happen next year.” The auditing firm was late in delivering the required audit to the Village.
The audit of the project is required to satisfy several agencies, such as the loan grantors, that the monies were actually utilized for the water tower. It is a detailed explanation of how and why portions of the loan were specifically spent for particular items and related costs.
A result of the delinquent audit report was that the Illinois Commerce Commission threatened to cut off funding to LaFayette. Ms. Dana promised to have this particular audit submitted before next week’s deadline.
The final item acted upon by the board concerned the chlorine pump at the water tower. After a short discussion, the board unanimously agreed to replace the existing pump which is wearing out and has reached the end of its serviceable life.