Community plaza nears completion
Hillsboro City Council members are seeing light at the end of a tunnel on a downtown community plaza and splash pad worked on for more than a year.
An area near the splash pad will get black wrought iron fencing and paving in the near future.
The fencing will be along A St. only.
Council members voted Tuesday to hire Newton-based Vogts Parga Construction to pour a concrete parking lot and sidewalks around the splash pad. The company’s bid was $40,992.
Circle C Paving of Goddard received a $45,862.60 contract to surface-treat Main St. from A St. north to just beyond a railroad right-of-way between 1st and 2nd Sts.
In other business, employee insurance turned out to be a not-so-happy expense.
“This is one of those times when it just looks ugly,” city administrator Matt Stiles said.
An insurance policy the city had last year was canceled, and the best price for replacement insurance was an age-banded Blue Cross and Blue Shield plan, with older employees’ policies being more expensive, at an increase of 59.5%.
Council members also voted Tuesday to approve the sale of three properties.
Chuck Maltbie, who operates a spa factory at 410 N Main St., bought two lots near a cell phone tower in the business park for $10,000.
Stiles said he thought Maltbie might plan to put in a retail outlet.
Elcon Properties bought three lots on Western Heights Circle for $15,000. The property is across Western Heights from the Elcon Services office.
Stiles said the new owners might expand Elcon or might use the property for retail development.
Hillsboro Ford bought a downtown lot where the city last year had a dilapidated building demolished. The car dealership plans to use the space for a parking lot.
Council members accepted the car dealership’s $5,000 bid.
Stiles told council members he thought the city couldn’t recapture the cost of demolishing the building that stood there.
Council member Blake Beye said he had reached out to a man who cleans up overgrown properties for free to publicize his social media channels.
After finding out the man lives in Wichita, Beye wanted to invite him to come to Hillsboro to work on some properties. Council members agreed.