SHERIDAN — Residents of the village may be looking at a few weeks of water restrictions this summer, depending on the date work begins on Sheridan’s water tower. These restrictions, should they be put in place, would likely apply only to the watering of lawns.
Ira Gabin, vice president of Dixon Engineering in Lake Odessa, was in town Tuesday evening to bring members of the village council up to speed with regard to work planned for the water tower. Gabin’s firm will be responsible for gathering bids and performing inspections on the blast cleaning and repainting of the tower’s interior.
The exterior of the tower was repainted in 2004, but the interior is in serious need of refurbishing. The cost of the project, according to Gabin, will hinge in large part upon the village’s timeline. Work performed during the summer months is typically less expensive than that same work in the fall and winter.
Unfortunately, water use in the village triples during the summer, according to Village Superintendent Doug Lane.
Though the village’s pump system and easy access to the lake would provide more than enough water for home use and possible fire department emergencies, water could be in short supply for the three weeks the work on the tower is underway if residents also were heavily watering their lawns.
Cost for the project is expected to be around $40,000, though again, that is only a tentative figure. At this point, Dixon has yet to seek any bids from contractors.
“We will be writing specifications for the work,” Gabin said. “It will be like doing any municipal projects. Then we’ll check the work inside and make sure they’ve done thing right. If they do it right it will last another 20-plus years. If they don’t do it right it could fail in a year or two. That’s why it’s important to check.”
Depending on where the bids come in, there could conceivably be enough money in the budget to pay for a few minor additional improvements to the tower, such as a railing around the top of the tower to provide additional safety to workers who change bulbs and adjust antennas there.
Council member Derek Wagner noted that if the tower were being built today the railing would be required. Council member Don Nassif pointed out that funds from the lease of space for the cell antennas are in part paying for the planned repainting.
Village President Susan Wykoff-McFarland suggested getting several bids for spring, summer and fall work in order to see if the difference in price would merit having the job done in the summer, when temporary water restrictions might be needed.
“Let’s price it out and see what the bids are,” Wykoff-McFarland said.
Gabin noted the project will be bid out with the caveat of a one-year guarantee on the work, along with a four-year maintenance bond.
“We check the work again after one year,” Gabin said. “If there are any defects anywhere, they have to come back and make repairs. When you fill that tank with water, if there’s something wrong it shows up pretty quickly.”
In other council business, Lane announced the new downtown clock — made possible through numerous donations from residents, local businesses and service organizations — has been ordered and will likely be installed in early March. Representatives from Simpson Family Funeral Homes were on hand as well to present the council with a $1,000 donation toward the clock fundraiser.
At this point, more than enough funds have been raised for the purchase of the clock; any money left over from that project is being put toward additional Christmas lighting and other cosmetic improvements to the downtown business area.
“That’s a huge success,” Wykoff-McFarland said. “It’s been a great show of support by our community. And I know of another $500 that’s still going to come in, probably within the next week.”
The council meets next at 7:30 p.m. on Feb. 18.