The Effingham City Council this week discussed the purchase of a new generator for the Wastewater Treatment Plant, in addition to opening bids for next year’s concrete patching program.

The city made an agreement with Pals Electric of Teutopolis for $357,777 to install the new generator at the plant. The bid was the low one, beating out offers from Bodine Electric of Decatur and Commercial Electric of Mattoon.

The new generator is slated to provide a back-up to existing power sources at the plant. The current generator will be moved from the plant to the Banker Street Pump Station.

Public Works Director Jeremy Heuerman said that the move of the existing generator to Banker Street did push the project over the original budget; thus, he had to present the updates to the full council.

“We did add some work to this project,” Heuerman said. “With the new UV generator, we’re going to relocate (the current) one and utilize (it) as well (at) the South Banker Street lift station. That’s why it’s over the $300,000 amount originally budgeted for.”

As for the concrete patching program, bids will be accepted for next year’s program on Nov. 30 at 10 a.m.

In other news:

• The council approved a quartet of zoning changes discussed at the previous week’s Plan Commission meeting:

◦ Business owner Carolyn Wallace asked that the property at 202-206 Henrietta Street be changed from R-4 Limited Office and Retail District to B-2 General Commercial. Wallace is attempting to convert a house on the property into office space.

◦ E.L. Holdings (Grunloh Building) asked to that the property along Surs Woods Drive and U.S. Route 45 be changed from R-2 Single Family Residence to B-2 General Commercial. Grunloh is attempting to build a new business space.

◦ North Wind Court, LLC asked that a property along North Fourth Street south of Rickelman Drive be converted from B-2 General Commercial to R-3D Multiple Dwelling. North Wind is attempting to build a series of new apartments on the property.

◦ Beverly J. Phelps asked that the property at 40 North Lakewood Drive be changed from NU Non-Urban to R-2 Single Family Residence. The zoning change completes a purchase of excess property by Phelps from the city.

• As part of the consent agenda, the council finalized the end of the city’s main TIF district, closing the book on 35 years of city business development through that fund. All other TIF funds—Central, Industrial and Outer Belt West were renewed and any existing funds and projects from TIF #1 will be transferred into the other three funds.

Zach Roth can be reached at or by phone at (217) 347-7151 ext. 132 or (217) 899-4338.

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