$10M public safety complex tops Greenfield mayor’s capital plan

  • WEDEGARTNER

Staff Writer
Published: 3/10/2020 9:35:17 PM

GREENFIELD — Mayor Roxann Wedegartner has announced her fiscal year 2021 capital budget, which will go before the City Council for a first reading this month.

The most expensive capital item is $10 million for the new public safety building to be built on city-owned property on Riddell Street. The second most expensive item is a $1 million allocation for repairs and replacement of sewer inflow and infiltration.

Wedegartner said the funding request for the public safety building was included in the capital budget before she added additional items.

“The funding was based on a feasibility study conducted a few years ago,” Wedegartner said in an interview Tuesday. “When we placed the project out to bid, potential project managers didn’t have” a problem with the funding.

She added the city also has $2.5 million earmarked for use on infrastructure on the site for preparation, “but it’s a process to be able to get it.”

In the capital budget booklet, Wedegartner wrote her reasoning for spending $1 million on the sewer system repairs.

“We are currently under an administrative consent order by the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Preservation and being monitored by the EPA for inflow and infiltration,” Wedegartner wrote. “We have hired Wright Pierce to evaluate the worst five sub-basins that were in flow monitoring back in 2016. ... This request could be just the start for repairs to the city’s sewer collection system. A hard figure for everything to be repaired and/or replaced can be accomplished once we get through Phase I and Phase II of the evaluation.”

Wedegartner wrote a memo to the Greenfield City Council stating the capital budget is a “continued commitment to upgrading our aging infrastructure, improving necessary security and public safety in the city and maintaining our school buildings with an eye toward energy efficiency and student, faculty and citizen safety.”

Items include updates in security to City Hall and office, the waste and water pumping stations, and Energy Park. In the realm of public safety, fire apparatus needs to be replaced, including two engines.

The capital budget presented is as follows:

■from the general fund, $11.68 million in borrowing, which includes $10 million for the public safety complex; $20,500 from capital stabilization; $90,000 from the Federal Emergency Management Agency; and $698,000 from grant, state and Chapter 90 money

■from the sewer fund, $1,215,000 from borrowing

■from the water fund, $940,000 from borrowing (debt service paid by the water enterprise fund); $50,000 bond premium; and $45,000 water retained earnings

■and from the GCET fund, $185,000 in borrowing, with the debt service to be paid by the GCET enterprise fund.

Schools

For the schools, several projects have been recommended to wait until the 2022 fiscal year, including replacing Chromebooks and other technology updates, a $50,000 asbestos removal request, replacement of the second Federal Street School elevator and an electronic sign at Greenfield Middle School.

The mayor requested funding for $100,000 from borrowing to pave the Federal Street School parking lot and repave the Newton School parking lot — a project that includes expanding the parking lot, curbing and lining, according to the capital budget request.

A $157,500 request from borrowing would replace carpeting in the Federal Street School main office and replace Greenfield Middle School’s gym floor, rubber floor and stair treads.

“The main office carpet is worn and pulling up in spots creating a hazard,” the capital budget request reads.

The current rubber floor and treads are “deteriorated to a point where repair is not possible,” the capital budget request continues. “By installing a high-grade rubber non-slip tread on four stairwells the useful life of the treads will increase.”

Department of Public Works

The major projects requested in the capital budget on behalf of the Department of Public Works include replacing a road treatment truck and a reconstruction project on Sanderson Street.

A request was made to borrow $211,000 to replace “a front line treatment vehicle,” according to the capital budget. “It is also a workhorse plow vehicle and is used for construction in the summer months. ... This particular truck is 23 years old and the heavy-duty truck life cycle is 20 to 25 years, some less, depending on what they do. This new vehicle will replace a 1996 Chevy Kodiak. The proposed body will come equipped with an all-season body and plow, so it can perform all DPW functions.”

The proposed Sanderson Street project would include replacing and repairing drainage and sewer issues as well as a broken pipe.

“This project is for the design and engineering for repairing/replacing drainage and sewer issues that have been identified,” according to the capital budget. “The design is also for the replacement of a 102-year-old water main. The project area is from Federal Street to Parkway (Street). It is an essential part of upgrading old and failing infrastructure in a particularly important section of the city.”

Reach Melina Bourdeau at mbourdeau@recorder.com or 413-772-0261, ext. 263.


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