Rock-bottom savings

Rangely could save nearly $100,000 by crushing tons of rock material

RANGELY — Rock, at least crushed rock, is music to the Rangely Town Council’s ears.
Council members, at a meeting Oct. 28, approved the crushing of 7,000 to 10,000 tons of rock material, to be used as backfill or overlay for various road projects.
“This is material we’ve accumulated over the years,” said Town Manager Peter Brixius. “By utilizing that material, we will realize future savings of $80,000 to $100,000. It’s a tremendous savings. This is a fairly common practice to recycle this material. The county is doing the same thing.”
An outside company will be hired to crush the material to Colorado Department of Transportation specifications. Brixius estimated it would cost the town $75,000 to $100,000 to have the material crushed. The savings would come from not having to buy the material and have it hauled in.
With the end of the year approaching, the council and town staff are busy working on the 2009 budget.
“The big thing we’re working on is finishing the budget by Dec. 15,” Brixius said. “That’s the regulatory deadline. The preliminary budget is already for public display in town hall.”
There will be a public hearing on the budget sometime in late November.
“The big challenge is just not knowing what estimates we’ll have for severance tax revenues and mineral leases,” Brixius said. “Nobody can make a prediction on what those severance revenues will be.”
The town council also approved continued participation in the White River Water Monitoring Program, which has been ongoing for 10 years. The town’s share is $5,330.
“We’re looking for potential changes in the constituents being monitored in the river,” Brixius said. “We will continue (to monitor) at several locations up and down the river. There have been a couple of things (show up) on occasion, where we have seen changes in pH and ammonia, usually due to storm events, which washes a lot of stuff into the river.”
The town passed a resolution supporting the Rangely School District’s $15 million bond initiative.
“There was a request by the school administration to see if the town would support that initiative,” Brixius said. “I think (people) see the need. It would only be more costly in the future. It’s a pretty cost-effective way for property owners to help schools.”
Council members approved a water line improvement project overrun of $19,661 to Pate Construction. The total cost of the project was $646,000.
“The engineers estimated $693,000, so we still came in under that,” Brixius said, adding the overrun would come from the general fund.
The water line replacement project, which was completed around the middle of October, consisted of almost 20 town blocks.
“This was pretty old line, probably several decades old,” Brixius said. “They took the old metal water line that was becoming encrusted with water hardness and had some leaks and replaced it with a very long-lasting PVC (pipe).
“This was one of the smoothest-running projects the town has seen in several years,” Brixius added.