The City of Monroe City Generator project has been the focus of Mayor Jerry Potterfield. The City is working to decommissioning the electric production capabilities of the City. The council will have to decide which is the better option for the City and the citizens. The council will be voting for bid specifications and if it is cost effective to bring current generators in line with DNR guidelines or more effective to fully decommission the electric production.
Sealed bids will be accepted for the project. The project will include: the demolition of a building located at 126 E. Summer St. and the removal and disposal of the generators at the location; the removal and disposal of generators located at the west end of the building located at 200 E. Summer St.; the removal and disposal of approximately 19,950 gallons of old diesel fuel and the tanks and equipment associated with the fuel; and a buyer for five CAT engines, buyer must also remove the engines from the facilities located at 200 and 218 E. Summer St.
The project will include reviewing the structure to determine if there is concern for asbestos, moving forward to handle any concerns properly. There will be workers’ compensation insurance on all personnel working on the project, showing proof of the insurance to the City before demolition begins, along with having a current business license. Contractor will need to carry $1,000,000 in demolition insurance with proof and has specific guidelines to follow, which include fencing off the area, furnishing roll-off boxes and removal of debris.
On July 14, Mayor Potterfield and City Administrator Jackie Pangborn reviewed the Electric facilities and generators. It was determined after reviewing the oldest generators are not in the greatest shape and there is “stuff” everywhere. It appears there are many items that are in different rooms which are not being used anymore and possibly haven’t even been moved in years. Items not being used or needed will be sold or scrapped. The first building east of South Davis St. where the main operating hub is located was determined to be in decent shape, noting that those generators do not run either. In the east end of the first building there are three generators that should be operable if needed and if brought back to working condition. The newest building was much cleaner and organized, with two generators that also should be operable if needed and if brought back into a working condition.
Mayor Potterfield met with Jeff Merkel on July 18 to look at the older generator units. The findings of this meeting reported Merkel determined it would be very labor intensive to get the generators out of the building. There may be issues with hauling the items, the material would have to be in sizes to fit into a melting pot and there aren’t that many providers for that type of service. In regard to the transformers, they will need to be prepped in order to be scrapped.
On July 22, a representative of Altorfer came to consult about the five newer CAT engines. He reported the two newest ones may be worth around $25,000 and the other three would be worth approximately $5,000-$10,000.
In 2002, the City purchased the two newest generators, receiving credits for power regeneration. When the RICE rule came into effect several years later, the generators would have to be retrofitted with scrubbers for air pollution control. At that time, the Council decided not to retrofit the generators because they felt DNR would change their restrictions, which never happened. City Administrator Pangborn asked Ewell Lawson, MPUA if the City were to retrofit the five generators to see if it was possible to get the credits back. Other towns have generators like the City’s that did retrofit them and are receiving credits, the Council would have to vote to allow the generators to be retrofitted. The credits would help area businesses and residents save money on their utility bill.
To retrofit the generators, it would cost approximately $25,000 each. Paul Jenson, a utility consultant of MPUA, stated, “The City should obviously get rid of the old generators. However, the newer CATS could be retrofitted with catalytic converters and would most likely qualify for the credits.” The generators would produce approximately $0.10 per kilowatt hour and MOPEP would give a credit that may justify the $25,000 per machine when generated. The City would possible get paid $.10 - $0.15 to generate. The cost the City would get paid would depend on an agreement made with MoPEP.
The next scheduled city council meeting is Thursday, September 17 at 6 p.m. The Board of Aldermen normally meet at 6 p.m. on the first and third Thursday of each month at City Hall, 109 Second Street. Due to COVID-19 health precautions the council will meet at South Park, weather permitting. The Board may also change a meeting date at a prior meeting due to scheduling conflicts. Board of Aldermen meetings are open to the public. Citizens have an opportunity to express their concerns and give their input at the open forum which is normally the second item on the agenda right after the consent agenda. It is suggested that you advise City Hall of the matter that you wish to discuss with the Board of Aldermen at least two days prior to the meeting so that research (if needed) may be performed prior to the meeting. If you do not know what ward you are in or have questions or concerns, please contact City Hall at (573)735- 4585.