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Cape Gazette
Lewes, Delaware
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July 25, 2006     Cape Gazette
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July 25, 2006
 

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CAPE BPW reviews improvement plan By Henry J. Evans Jr. Cape Gazette staff The Lewes Board of Public Works could begin cutting or delaying several capital improve- ment projects as concerns grow that rising costs are making them unaffordable. Board member Jay Carmean said at least one project, the wastewater treatment facility expansion, which is included in the BPW's total $31 million CIP, is not a fixed contract. He said the result is an inaccurate summary. The BPW held a special meet- ing on July 12, to review overall funding of $30 million in the board's capital improvements plan (CIP). "We don't have a contingency. I don't want to be in the position five years from now of needing to borrow money," Carmean said. Some projects are under con- struction and others are under contract to be constructed or have timated costs attached and are planned for construction through 2009. "I'm worried that these are not accurate estimates," Carmean said of planned projects. Carmean, a retired Delmarva Power operations executive and the board's newest member, said his analysis of the plan shows the cst of other projects rising from ose given in the summary. SHe pointed to four proposed ctdc department projects a lmary transmission line .grade, a ring-buss power distri- ition system, a well field system @uild and underground power Lewes Continued from page 1 field substation at a cost of $1.1 million, the board plans to rent a mobile substation for the well field at an estimated cost of $677,000. The goal of the electrical divi- sion's improvements is to line installations - that would cost substantially more than the $3.3 million estimated in the plan. Carmean said Booth & Associates, the board's electrical system consultant, confirmed the costs of the projects would be more than estimates the board currently has. He said cost estimates for the proposed construction next year of an elevated water storage tank have increased from $1.1 million to $1.7 million. City engineers have said the elevated tank is needed to increase water pressure in parts of the city and to provide capacity for growth. George, Miles & Buhr engineer Amanda Pollack provided the board with a presentation similar to that she gave the Mayor and Council at its July 10, meeting. Using the same funding sum- mary she had for the city's CIP review, Pollack said the city and BPW have a combined $2.2 mil- lion contingency balance. She said the money could be used to pay cost increases seen in some projects. Board President Gary Stabley asked Pollack which proj- ects the BPW should consider eliminating or delaying. Pollack said engineers have prioritized the projects. She said projects not yet started such as improvements to Devries Circle, which would cost an esti- mated $548,000 and is next on the list after the City Hall expansion, should go forward as scheduled. She said the water system under Devries Circle is Outdated and the roadVcay needs to be rebuilt. Pollack Said construction of the elevated water tank and a new production water well, estimated to cost $342,000, could be con- sidered for delay. She said an estimated $2.8 mil- lion wastewater treatment plant effluent disposal system could be eliminated if the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control decides it isn't needed. Stabley asked Pollack how con- fident GMB is of its estimates for projects that have not yet been bid. "I would think they're good for the next year, but anything could happen," she said. Stabley asked that GMB engi- neers return to the board with a list of projects that could be cut from the plan. "I want to let the people know what we're up against. We're sending out a warning signal," Stabley said. increase reliability and to provide back-up capability in the event of power line or substation failures. Mecham said the city's electri- cal system reliability would remain as high as it is now and would actually get better because of other BPW improvements and improvements Conectiv Energy, which feeds Lewes its electricity, is also continuing to make. GAZETTE - Tuesday, July 25 - Thursday, July 27, 2006 - 5 HOME THEATER I ONE DAY "MEGA-SALE" * FRIDAY, JULY 28 * lOAM'MIDNIGHT * WITH COUPON ONLY DELIVERY! MINIMUM slO00 PURCHASE REQUIRED MAXIMUM VALUE OF DELIVERY: $200 CANNOT BE COMBINED WITH OTHER OFFERS DOES NOT APPLY TO PREVIOUS PURCHASES REHOBOTH 3 Lighthouse Plaza Between Super G & K.Mart 302-227-6847 www.leisurefitness.com