City approves emergency to replace damaged landfill building

By Travis Gulbrandson

The Vermillion City Council has declared another emergency relating to the fire at the Vermillion Landfill – this time so the damaged building can be removed.

The decision was made at the council's regular meeting on Monday.

City Finance Officer Mike Carlson pointed to state statute 5-18A-9, which says a purchasing agency may make an emergency procurement without advertising the procurement if there is a threat to public safety.

Carlson said landfill manager Bob Iverson has stated his concerns about the building being able to handle any snow, ice or wind this winter, and poses a threat to the landfill's offices.

A state building inspector had the same concerns, Carlson said.

"We don't know what the cost of (removal) is going to be," Carlson said. "The insurance company provides coverage up to $250,000 for debris removal, which they would be reimbursing.

"The insurance company will want to review any of the bids that we get to determine if they feel that they're reasonable before we go forward," he said.

Specifications for the building removal will be developed, after which time they need to be approved by the insurance company.

Following this, the specifications will be used to solicit quotes from contractors.

Carlson said the city will try to get "at least two quotes" for the project.

The building itself will be considered "debris" and the metal will go to scrap, he said.

"The idea would be to bid for removal, but also to salvage all the metals," Carlson said. "The bailer has a lot of metal and iron in it. All the metal from the beams and such is to be removed and recycles, sold, reused – just not as building (material)."

The new building will not be built on the old concrete where the former building stood.

At the same meeting, Carlson gave the first reading of supplemental appropriations for the revised city budget for 2012. Included in this were several increases to the Landfill Utility Fund, some of which were necessitated by the fire.

The first was an increased $200,000 for the purchase of a wheel loader approved by the city council at $170,000 and the replacement of other items.

The second related to the removal of the baler building, and the third is the balance of the insurance proceeds received to date that were not appropriated in the previous two items.

According to a memo given to the city council members, these proceeds will be reserved for building, equipment and contents replacement next year.

The fire at the Vermillion Landfill occurred the morning of Oct. 22, and was discovered by employees arriving to work. Among the equipment lost in the fire were a small loader, a truck and the bailer.

At the city council meeting held Nov. 19, another emergency was declared to make it easier for the city to replace some fire department gear that was damaged in the fire.

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