The Waveland Board of Mayor and Aldermen on Wednesday discussed the Waveland Avenue Sidewalk Project.
Engineer Jason Chiniche and David Taylor with the Gulf Regional Planning Commission provided the update.
Aldermen Shane LaFontaine asked why the project hasn't gone out for bid yet.
"The primary holdup was when we were considering the railroad track crossing," Chiniche said. "That kicked it up into a different level of investigation review by MDOT and CSX," he said. "One of the things that we have been aware of is that we are over the original budget with the construction estimate."
Chiniche said he can't give a firm bid date until the city receives authorization from MDOT. Once the PSE package is completed – which Chiniche submitted for board approval and the mayor's signature – then MDOT will issue the authorization to advertise.
City attorney Rachel Yarborough asked Chiniche "what's the delta between the federal funds that are obligated and the construction estimate?"
In the original application, Chiniche said about $1.5 million was obligated. The current cost estimate is about $1.9 million.
"Now we actually have a design and we have quantities," he said. "The application was based on a very preliminary rough estimate. Now that we've actually moved into design, we see exactly how many feet of culvert we need, driveways that will have to be replaced."
Alderman Jeremy Burke said that – according to his review of the information – the city of Waveland will fund the remaining balance from the general fund for any additional costs over the federal share.
"We have a $1.1 million federal share," he said. "If we have $1.9 million, does that mean that that $800,000 is exclusively going to come out of general fund?"
Taylor said that happens "fairly frequently."
"What MDOT recommends is that you go ahead and go through the bid process to see what the bids will come back as," he said. "Ideally, the bids will come back potentially lower than that. You're not committed to that thing, either."
Taylor said that the city could also reduce the scope of the project to conform to budgetary constraints.
"You may be able to come back to us for additional funding," Taylor said.
Another 20 percent – which is the maximum – could be added on, Taylor said.
The board agreed that the city needed to obtain the bids.
Yarborough asked Chiniche if the bids came in near the estimate, would the city be allowed to amend the scope of work proposed in the application and would that affect funding.
"No, I don't think it will," Chiniche said. "Because on the application, it actually talks about amending the project if needed."
The board approved a motion authorizing Mayor Mike Smith to sign all documents for the PSE submittal packet.
In other action:
Waveland residents Bryan Therloph and Anne McCauley spoke to the board about enforcing building regulations and curbside recycling, respectively.
Therloph gave the board a print out of the city's building permit packet, particularly as it pertains to erosion control requirements and storm drainage.
Silt fencing must be erected around the property, he said.
"There isn't silt fence at any construction site I've come across recently that is installed correctly, except one contractor who has completed a home on Nicholson," Therloph said.
The two sites Therloph focused on were the car wash on Highway 90 and North Beach Boulevard. There is an erosion control plan for the car wash, Therloph said, that hasn't been followed or installed correctly.
As far as the North Beach property, Therloph said, "nothing was put in place there until I mentioned it to the mayor."
Therloph said that there has been "erosion into the beach sand."
"I just wanted to call your attention to it because I've discussed this with the building department a few times and nothing's happened," he said.
Therloph also mentioned the storm water runoff and erosion control plan and temporary construction access guidelines that the city has in place.
"I don't understand when you contracted out for building inspection, this wasn't followed at all," he said. "Now you have an in-house building department and they're not following it. I just feel that we need to be proactive and the purpose of creating your own building department in-house is to move forward and do that better. New construction is going to get more robust and it's not helping storm drainage situation and it's making a mess of streets where we have construction going on."
Smith said the building official has been responsive to his requests.
"And I can't answer why it's not being done better, but I can get you that answer soon," Smith said. "I know he's working his tail off. I think we have 16 active buildings as we speak. He's got a lot on his shoulders, I will say that, too."
McCauley told the board that she is a new Waveland resident. For seven years, she said, she was involved in designing and implementing recycling plans at the University of Mississippi.
McCauley said she encourages Waveland to get involved. She said she has spoken to other residents.
"What I would propose is that we could present this board – maybe as soon as the next meeting – with a recommendation which could be a feasible way to implement curbside recycling in Waveland,' McCauley said.
The board also discussed mailing out flyers to residents with the estimated costs of the addition of curbside recycling, as a means to gather public input.
In a separate matter, city comptroller Ron Duckworth gave the board a financial review as of Feb. 28.
The total cash on hand for governmental activities is $7,592,201, of which $4,475,499 is on deposit in the depository account, he said. The total cash on hand for business activities is $2,617,682 of which $1,924,467 is on deposit in the utility department depository account, Duckworth said.
February tax collections were lower than expected and sales tax collections are about .19 percent above budget and projection, he said.
Building permit revenue is $60,680 and franchise fees are lower than expected.
In the expenditures general fund, expenditures remain "lower than budget year to date by $144,985," he said.
The revenues in the utility department are $37,997 over budget because of the higher gas revenue and higher water usage due to the cold weather, he said.
Utility department expenditures are lower than budget year-to-date by $169,231, Duckworth said.
The board scheduled a public hearing on April 18 at 6:30 p.m. to consider declaring the property at 124 Lakeside Dr. a nuisance.
The next meeting is scheduled for April 3 at 6:30 p.m.