SHERIDAN – Sheridan City Engineer Hanns Mercer recommends postponing the city’s sewage treatment plant pumping station upgrade project after bids were much higher than expected.
The proposed project involves the replacement of three raw sewage lift pumps at the city’s sewage treatment plant. The existing pumps were originally installed in 1983, according to Mercer, and have exceeded their lifespan.
Pumps need to be replaced to ensure the plant continues to operate properly and efficiently.
âThe original manufacturer has been bought out, so they’re going to stop servicing these pumps,â Mercer said. âThere are spare parts, but they are getting very limited. So that’s what started our project from the start.
The city received two bids for the project, from Western Municipal Construction of Wyoming of Meeteetse and JR Civil of Sheridan. The lowest of those bids – the West Municipality’s bid of $ 395,884 – was twice the engineer’s estimate of $ 196,100 for the project. JR Civil has offered over $ 489,000 for the project.
Mercer attributed the current bidding environment and high construction costs to the higher than expected bids.
In the future, the city could ask city staff to install the pumps themselves to reduce costs, Mercer said. The city could also choose to re-bid at a later date or find additional funding if the cost of the project does not drop. The project is financed by funds from the city’s sewerage company.
Mercer said he expects existing pumps to continue operating efficiently as the city considers its next move. All three pumps have had to be replaced or rebuilt since they were installed, and one pump is currently in the workshop, Mercer said. A back-up pump will be used if existing pumps fail, Mercer said.
â¢ City councilors reviewed an animal ordinance during Monday’s working session.
The proposed ordinance updates the city’s definition of animal cruelty for the first time in nearly seven decades. The order had already been approved at first reading, but was filed for second reading so that city attorney Brendon Kerns could make further changes.
The new changes remove a series of older ordinances from the 1960s that are no longer applicable, such as the one referring to a “poundmaster” – a position that no longer exists in the city.
Kerns also clarified the language in the sections of the ordinance regarding proper grooming and veterinary care. The language of these sections now reflects state law.
Councilor Kristen Jennings had previously worried about the wording of these articles and wondered if an animal could be removed from a home if, for example, an owner refused to pay for expensive cancer treatments. The amendments are intended to clarify this issue, Kerns said.
Finally, Kerns deleted an article from the ordinance regarding the criminalization of declawing cats in the city. Jennings and Councilor Steven Brantz have asked Kerns to remove the section defended by Councilor Jacob Martin. The article was added to the ordinance when it was first read.
âThere is no way to enforce this rule,â Brantz said. “… I also believe that the people of Sheridan, Wyoming have a right to choose and vets have a right to talk to their clients (about declawing cats). “
Martin continued to advocate for the inclusion of cat declawing tongue in the prescription.
âThis is not about excessive government or trying to regulate a veterinarian’s practice,â Martin said. “This is about putting an end to an inhumane operation.”
Jennings said she was concerned not only with the declawing tongue, but much of the prescription itself. Previously, Jennings feared the ordinance was a form of government overrun that could negatively impact voters.
Under the ordinance, the townspeople would be found guilty of animal cruelty and neglect if they did not provide the animals with adequate food, water, sanitation, etc. ; confines the animal in a vehicle or trailer without adequate food, water or ventilation; causes the death, injury or harm of an animal; allows an animal to remain in its own urine or feces; or refuses veterinary care for an animal with an obvious or diagnosed medical disease, among others. While the animal cruelty changes are the most significant changes proposed to the city’s animal code, they aren’t the only ones, Kerns said. Others are suggesting ways to “fill in some loopholes” in the current ordinance, Lt. James Hill of the Sheridan Police Department said in a previous meeting.
For example, the current code prohibits a person from keeping an animal in the city if it moves away from its owner’s premises and is not under the owner’s control. However, this is not enforceable when someone lives outside of town and the animal wanders within town limits, Kerns said. A proposed amendment will correct the problem so that a person can be charged for a loose animal, regardless of the origin of the animal.
There is also a proposed change to the vicious / aggressive animals section of the code. Currently, the code only has one ordinance for a vicious animal. The animal must be free and then must be vicious towards another animal or another person. But because the animal must be free, if a person walks his dog on a leash and the dog bites a passing person, there is probably no violation of the law. Kerns is proposing a change that says owners can be cited for a vicious animal if the animal is at large or not under the owner’s direct physical control at the time of the attack.
The city’s revised animal ordinance will be discussed at the city council meeting on September 20.