Covington Council discusses $4.4 million project

By Sam Wildow -

COVINGTON — Covington Council’s meeting Monday evening began with a discussion of the reconstruction of High Street in Covington. The council held a second reading of a resolution to submit an application for federal fast funds through the Miami Valley Regional Planning Commission to fund the estimated $4.4 million project.

“This is a complete reconstruction of High Street,” Brice Schmitmeyer of Access Engineering said. He added that the reconstruction will take place on High Street from U.S. 36 to State Route 41. It will also include new street lighting and streetscape designs.

This application, though, is just the beginning of a long process.

“If this application went through, construction wouldn’t start until 2022,” Schmitmeyer said.

If the village submits this application this month, they will not find out until around March or April if they will be awarded the grant funding.

Schmitmeyer estimated that the bids for the project will total approximately $4,364,000. The federal fast funds would pay for approximately $2,935,000, and the village would be responsible for approximately $1,428,500.

“You’re not really committing yourself to it right now,” Schmitmeyer said.

Schmitmeyer said that the six years until the estimated construction start date would allow the village to possibly find more grant funding, find a low-interest loan, and budget village funds for this project.

The schedule would also include completing the project design between 2018-2020.

“It does include widening the street,” Schmitmeyer said. The street would be widened approximately one foot on each side.

“It’s a project council has talked about awhile,” Schmitmeyer said.

The council also held the second reading of a resolution to lease trash and recycling toters from TFC financing at a total cost of $19,777.21 over the next two years. They also held the second reading of an ordinance to update the curfew for minors to midnight until 6 a.m. as the current curfew is 11 p.m. to 6 a.m. and was established in May 1975.

In new business, the council had a discussion on purchasing liability insurance for 2016-17.

The cost of renewing with the village’s current provider Hylant Insurance Ohio Plan is $31,475, which is down from $32,990 from last year.

The village also received an offer of $25,323 from USI Insurance Public Entity. Village Administrator Mike Busse, who was absent from the meeting due to training, noted in his report that the village has used them before, but they do not offer tail coverage.

A representative from USI Insurance Public Entity attended council’s meeting Monday evening with a presentation on USI Insurance Public Entity’s aggressive loss control plans. The council voted to table voting on which liability insurance to purchase until they could speak with Busse, who previously recommended in his report to stay with their current provider.

The council also voted to approve a payment of $73,017 to Utility Service for their work completing the small water tower renovations on Maple Street. The work was approved by the council in March, and the funds were already budgeted.

Also in the council’s meeting, Mayor Ed McCord reminded the community of the following items:

• The next public hearing on electric and gas aggregation programs on Monday, Oct. 17, at 6:30 p.m. at the municipal building, located at 1 S. High St.

• Wright Street will be closed on Tuesday, Oct. 25, between 6-9 p.m. for the Halloween Costume Contest, which will be held at 7 p.m.

• Trick-or-Treat night will be Monday, Oct. 31, from 6-8 p.m.

By Sam Wildow

Reach Sam Wildow at or (937) 451-3336

Reach Sam Wildow at or (937) 451-3336