As you receive this quarterly newsletter, I am extremely pleased to inform everyone the Willow Avenue Project has finally come to a conclusion. Hallelujah!
Thank you to all our residents, particularly to Town Pump and those residents living in close proximity to Willow Avenue for your patience and understanding. This street project was one of the most challenging in my experience as your Mayor.
We had many issues associated with the old water and sewer lines under Willow Avenue that we did not anticipate. Valves that didn’t work, sewer lines encased in concrete, lack of correct as-built drawings—you name it. I am so thankful that we made the decision to replace all this old water and sewer infrastructure before we began the project. Thank you City Council.
I hope everyone will enjoy and take pride in this “new look” on Willow Avenue, the entrance to our city. I have very much appreciated the hard work and attention to detail our Public Works Director Bryan Swan has given this project. Also KLJ Engineering and our resident KLJ Engineer, McKenzie Butcher.
At the August 22nd City Council meeting, we had our Public Hearing and Resolution approving the 2017/18 budget. Next year will also be a challenging year as we work on new projects to upgrade infrastructure and provide services to our residents.
Our taxable valuation increased from $59,270,841 to $61,135,245. An increase of $1,864,404. This is good news, allowing us to increase our appropriation with minimal impact to our residential taxpayers. Our mills to operate the city are set as 50.56. The city is currently at the maximum mills allowed by state law. The total amount of dollars to operate and maintain the city is $9,892,140.
Some of the major capital and maintenance projects for next year include:
Pavement Overlay on the Overpass $ 250,000
Pavement Overlay on Main Street $ 500,000
Zone 3 Water Tank Replacement $2,300,000
High Service Pump Replacement (water) $ 615,000
Wastewater Treatment Plant Upgrades $1,990,000
We have other projects including the finalization of costs associated with Willow Avenue. If anyone would like to see the budget or have questions, we have a copy available at city hall. We would welcome any questions regarding the budget or any other activity or project the city is involved with.
The city has completed the transfer of the Street Light District from Rosebud County. The levy of 2.96 mills equates to a yearly assessment of $4.00 for a property valued at $100,000 and $6.00 for a property valued at $150,000. With this transfer and control of our Lighting District our ultimate goal will be to improve upon our street lighting for the safety and security of our city. (The LED lights on Willow Avenue are an example)
With this newsletter, I am also very pleased and take pride in announcing the City of Colstrip has received MMIA’s award for Loss Control Achievement for Montana’s third class cities in the Workers Compensation Program. Congratulations to our Colstrip city employees—you’re the “Best” and the “Safest”. We take pride in our Safety Program and our employees participation, support and involvement.