Posted on April 18, 2019
LA VALLE — The Lake Redstone Protection District Board planned to open the bids for its 25 bay dredging project April 16. However, plans changed when two disposal sites were eliminated from the project.
Chairman Mike Mittelstadt said in an email April 12 the contractors requested more time to redo their bids with the properties eliminated from the bid package. The board will open and record bid results for the sediment removal project at a special meeting 11 a.m. April 23 at La Valle Town Hall.
The board plans to dredge 25 bays around the lake, removing sediment to help the lake become more usable. If the sediment is not removed, it could also decrease property values of the homes around Lake Redstone. The project plans to remove sediment using mechanical or hydraulic dredging and dispose it at nearby “spoil sites,” using residents property to dispose the mucky substance.
Total spoil sites for sediment disposal were reduced from 10 to six. Treasurer Glenn Choroszy said, at the April 9 meeting, a property owner pulled out two of his lots because of concerns of interfering with the conservation reserve program, a federal program designed to conserve water, soil and other natural resources. He said the same property owner is allowing a larger portion of one of the lots, up to 15 acres, to stack sediment ten feet high.
The board is looking at requesting to use property between the police boat landing and Meronek Meadows as a potential spoil site if needed. It would need approval from the town of La Valle before going forward with the option.
After the bids are read and recorded April 22, Dredging Committee Member Dick Fish, Vice Chairman Paul Burke, Choroszy and a representative from Jewell Associates will adjourn to the town hall’s separate conference room, contacting the companies to discuss and analyze the bids before reviewing and selecting a company at another special meeting. The board approved to authorize the item at its April 9 meeting at La Valle Town Hall.
The board plans to review and possibly select a company at at a special meeting scheduled for 3 p.m. April 24 at La Valle Town Hall. The board plans to present the company selection to taxpayers at a district meeting scheduled for May 18 at the Cal Center at 1100 South Albert Ave in Reedsburg.
The board received bids between $3 million and $6 million from three different companies last summer, rejecting all bids to look at other cost saving options. Since then, the board has decided to pursue FEMA money to dredge the additional 30,000 cubic yards of sediment accumulated by the 2018 floods and eliminate one bay on the southwest corner of the lake. The board decided to eliminate the bay because it only contained four cubic yards of sediment.
The board is hoping to continue requesting funds from the county after the bids are known. In February, the Sauk County Conservation, Planning and Zoning committee denied the group’s request for $6 million in funding for the project but will help move it forward. Mittelstadt said, at the April 9 meeting, the Lake Redstone Protection District Board recently presented the dredging project to 50th District Assembly Rep. Tony Kurtz, R-Wonewoc, asking about potential state funding for the project.
Fish said the bid documents and specifications were reviewed and modified to provide contractors more flexibility. Three different bid packages are offered, including the option for companies to bid on hydraulic dredging, mechanical dredging and a combination of the two. The dredging schedule has been extended to start dredging in June 2019 or the beginning of 2020 with substantially completion of the project no later than December 2020. Fish said final site grading of disposal sites and restoration are scheduled for completion June 30, 2021.
“We shouldn’t have any complaints about the schedule being too short,” Fish said.
Burke said funding requests for a project to reconstruct the damaged earthen berm at Meronek Meadows was submitted to a FEMA representative for review. He said the representative made corrections to the documents to resubmit to the federal agency. Burke said the board plans to “concentrate on the dredging part” of the documents after submitting the request for Meronek Meadows to see if funding is available for the additional 30,000 cubic yards of sediment.
Meronek Meadows suffered damage to its earthen berm from the 2018 floods. Burke said the board plans to use its own money to reconstruct the berm and hopes FEMA will provide reimbursement for the costs of the project.
The board approved modifying its contract with adviser Ayres Associates by adding $5,000 for updating bid documents and sending a representative to the Sauk County Conservation, Planning and Zoning Committee meeting in February.
The board approved to recognize former Chairman Chuck Ecklund for his service to the board with a $200 VISA gift card. The board approved giving gift cards in the past to other former long standing members of the board who stepped down.