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Guyton pushes for paving, drainage upgrades
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Residents in one area of Effingham County soon may get some much-needed road improvements.

Guyton City Council heard proposals last week for the grant writers and the engineers for road repaving and drainage upgrades along Fourth Street Extension, from Poplar Street to Powell Road. The city plans to apply for a $500,000 Community Development Block Grant for the project.

"I think it’s a great chance to get that area the way it needs to be," Alderman Ulysses Eaton said. "It’s long overdue."

The city received two proposals to administer the grant, from Associates in Local Government Assistance (ALGA) and Bob Robertson and Associates. Both firms requested a fee of 6 percent of the grant amount.

Eaton recommended ALGA, saying the city has worked with them before and "ALGA seems to have a little more experience."

Council also heard the three engineering bids. Hofstadter and Associates proposed 6-9 percent of the project cost for services and 2-3 percent for inspection; Ben Turnipseed Engineers’ offer was not to exceed 9 percent for services and not to exceed 3 percent for inspection; and EMC Engineering Services bid 7 percent for services and 2 percent for inspection.

Eaton recommended Statesboro-based EMC because it is a local company and it proposed a flat rate rather than a fee range. EMC Engineering Services also pledged to reduce its fee for services if the project turns out costlier than expected.

"I like the tone of that," he said. "EMC said 7 percent, not that it might be 8 percent or 9. It’s going to be 7 – and, if the project gets bigger, they will lower the fee."

After hearing the proposals, council approved Alderwoman Brenda Lovett’s motion to table any action until city attorney Ray Smith reviews the contracts. Guyton City Council will meet again March 27 at 8 a.m.

In other business, city council approved $18,090 for Hofstadter and Associates for engineering fees, a design development report and environmental reports as part of their engineering work for the city’s proposed wastewater treatment plant.

The city has determined that building the plant will cost less than tying into Effingham County’s system. The city is currently using 65,000 to 85,000 gallons per day of its 107,000-gallon-per-day allotment at Springfield’s sewage treatment plant.

Eaton estimated "possibly late summer" for a groundbreaking for the plant, followed by a year of construction.