Gravel, dirt and runway

Saratoga council announces gravel removal completion, garden board conflict flares, runway rehab discussed


The Saratoga Town Council met Tuesday for routine business and to discuss issues facing the town, but the conflict between the council and members of the Saratoga Community Garden Board flared up, leading to heated exchanges.

The council announced the removal of a gravel bar in the North Platte near the WY-130 bridge as well as the final price tag for the project before discussing improvements to the airport runways that will close the facility for a time. The council then took up discussion about the garden board and the logistics behind converting that board to a nonprofit 501(c)(3).

The gravel bar, Mayor Ed Glode said, had been removed over the course of a few days by Dixon-based Ready Oilfield Service. The job went smoothly, but the price for the project came back higher than anticipated because of the large amount of gravel that had to be re- moved.

Originally, the cost of the project was projected to be around $133,000 Glode said, but with 9,537 cubic yards, 53 percent more than the 6,225 cubic yards originally estimated removed from the river, the total for the project came in at $172,311, which was $39,000 more than estimated.

The contractor, Glode said, performed about $15,000 of work for which it did not bill the town. Despite the cost, gravel on the west side of the bridge was not removed, even though its removal was in the original plan.

Glode said the town paid $16,000 freight on the four pieces of equipment that did the work, plus $16.39 per cubic yard of material removed.

Richard Raymer, who represents the town on the airport board, then informed council members about the runway rehabilitation project the airport board hopes to accomplish, and made a motion to request the funds.

The project would be mostly funded by the federal government, who would pay for $56,922 which is 90 percent of the cost. The state will cover $3,794 leaving the town to cover approximately $2,500.

Raymer said the runway will have to be closed for the project, and the airport board hopes to complete the project in the spring of 2018. The work must begin when the weather is nice enough Raymer said, but must not interfere with the operation of the airport during the busy summer season.

The board acted unanimously to approve Raymer’s motion and request the funding for the project.

The council discussed other business before retiring into executive session. Executive session is not open to members of the public or media, and is intended to give council members the opportunity to discuss business of a private nature, such as litigation or personnel issues.

The next meeting of the Saratoga Town Council will be 6 p.m. March 7 at Saratoga Town Hall.


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