City Council awards bids for Emergency Services building

Patrick Fisher, Staff Writer

New Prague's new Emergency Service Building continues to move forward as the New Prague City Council awarded bids for the project. The awarding of bids was one of several items covered by the council at its Monday meeting.

Buetow and Associates Inc., the St. Paul architectural firm that has been working with the city on the building, recommended Ebert, Inc., of Corcoran who had the lowest bid out of 17 companies - roughly $2.5 million.

The second bid for the project was to provide precast concrete. New Prague City Administrator Jerry Bohnsack said the recommended bidder for the project was Wells Concrete Products of Wells. They had a bid of a $336,897. While there was one bid lower, that bid didn't meet the requirements. The council unanimously approved both bids.

The Emergency Services Building will be located along Highway 21 near Sixth Street NW. The structure is proposed to be 21,884 square feet and will be used by the New Prague Fire Department and the New Prague Ambulance Service. The building will be jointly owned by the city and the New Prague Rural Fire Association.

No date has been set for groundbreaking or completion of the project. City Planner Ken Ondich said the contractor will have 213 days from the start of construction to complete the project.

Rental ordinance

The council held the first reading of the proposed rental registration ordinance.

New Prague City Planner Renee Christianson presented the ordinance a rental code task force recommended. The city created the task force last year after a group of residents addressed the council about concerns over rental issues; many residents were from Prague Estates neighborhood affected by the Parish mortgage fraud case.

The proposed ordinance states that owners of rental properties throughout the city will register those properties with the city. Not registering properties would be considered a misdemeanor.

Christianson said she had a few phone calls from rental owners asking if the registration could be every other year, rather than every year as listed in the ordinance.

The council unanimously accepted the reading. A second reading and a public hearing on the ordinance will be held at the council's Monday, March 17, meeting.

Liquor licenses

The council unanimously approved the annual liquor licenses for restaurants and bars within the community.

Mike Kosloski of Coborn's Superstore presented a request for an off-sale liquor license for a store that will be connected to, but separate from the grocery store. The council approved the off-sale license.

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