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Backus: Sanitary district contract approved with increase

Echo Journal file photo.

After some consideration, the Backus City Council on Monday, July 2, approved an updated contract with the Pine River Area Sanitary District with an increase of about $2,000.

In light of the city selling its townhomes, the city public works department no longer performed certain duties; however, Andy Schwartz, of PRASD, said the loss of the townhomes did not reduce their work significantly.

"I don't think we spend any less time up here," Schwartz said.

Schwartz explained that the new contract details much of the department's work done in Backus; however, some duties remain that are not specifically listed. He said there is always some sort of maintenance to work on in the city.

The main reason for the cost increase is personnel. The council voted unanimously to approve the contract.

In other business, the council:

• Learned that first response has received its new Suburban and is applying new stickers.

• Agreed to purchase a tax-forfeited lot next to the water tower from Cass County for $5,000. Schwartz explained there may be grant funds available to cover most or all of the cost once the city finishes its wellhead protection plan. Purchasing the property now meant avoiding additional costs of an upcoming assessment for the city streets project.

• Set a hearing at 6 p.m. Aug. 6 at city hall on the proposed assessment to pay for $212,500 of the upcoming city street project. The payback period is 15 years, with 5 percent interest added if not prepaid.

• Approved a $876.60 stump grinding quote by Roland Orth for stumps at the Rocky Dock Park.

• Accepted a $350 donation on behalf of the first response team from Ada Lake Association.