Council Okays Contracts for Lamar Loop Planning and GoCO Inspire Grant

Rick Akers Addresses City Council

Rick Akers Addresses City Council

A brief Lamar City Council meeting on January 25th dealt mostly with appointments and contract renewals.

One of the next steps in the construction of the proposed Lamar Loop, a walking path encircling most of the city and connecting several exercise areas, is the hiring of a firm for design and construction documents. Two firms responded to bid requests and city staff recommended Alta Planning and Design of Portland, Oregon for the project.  Lamar Parks and Recreation Director, Rick Akers, said the contract is not to exceed $106,294 for services to the city which was approved by the council.  “We originally had five responses, but each of them said the initial $100,000 cap was too low for the services we were requesting,” he explained.  Akers informed the council that the current contract would cover the first five miles of the proposed loop, with additional work expected to be bid out as the plans for construction continues.  The Lamar Loop, which will be about 9.4 miles long when complete, will be built in stages, not all at once.  Councilwoman, Anne-Marie Crampton, recommended that the plans be displayed at several areas around the city, including the Lamar Welcome Center, to provide residents with an idea of what the Loop will look like and the areas of the city it will connect.

On a similar note, Akers asked the council for contract approval for work on the grant to be submitted to GOCO by October for Inspire Grant funding. The council is hiring Civic Canopy and Connected Realities to gather information and facilitate meetings to compile the information required to be submitted in the grant.  The contract comes to $40,320 for the Morrison, Colorado firm.  The work is expected to be completed by June of this year.  Lamar could be awarded as much as $5 million in grant funding to develop various recreational facilities for local residents.

Lamar Police Chief, Kyle Miller, informed the council the lease with Kactus Incorporated for the detective’s offices needs to be continued. Lamar Mayor, Roger Stagner, signed the new, three year agreement which includes office space, as well as a garage to store vehicles that need to be processed for evidence.  The cost is $750 per month.  The city had been renting the offices on a month-to-month basis prior to the new contract.

Houssin Hourieh, Superintendent of Lamar Light and Power, will remain as a representative to the Arkansas River Power Authority Board. The council ratified a phone poll taken on January 14th for the authorization to re-appoint Hourieh to the position, with Administrator John Sutherland as the second member.  The appointment will continue until December 31, 2019.

Bert Davis, the city’s Human Resources Manager, will serve as the representative to the County Health Pool with City Clerk, Linda Williams as the city’s alternate.

By Russ Baldwin

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