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NLR Council approves $4.95 million bid for overhaul of Murray Hydro Unit 2

The North Little Rock City Council Monday approved the expenditure of $4.59 million for the overhaul of Murray Hydro Unit 2’s turbines.

The council awarded the contract to the low bidder Hydro Consulting & Maintenance Services Inc. (HCMS).

“HCMS has performed reliable work at the Murray Hydroelectric plant for many years,” reads Resolution 2013-170.

The cost of the project will be paid from the 2014 operating budget of the North Little Rock Electric Department.

The council also approved a request to enter into cost-sharing agreements for professional services related to the acquisition of electric generation plants.

“The city of North Little Rock is interested in examining the feasibility of acquiring an interest in existing natural gas generation,” reads the ordinance. “The city is interested in sharing the cost of feasibility analysis with other Arkansas public power providers based upon the proportion of interest.”

The city’s proportional share is anticipated to be less than 10 percent of the total cost of services and shall be paid from the operation budget of the electric department.

“After the interested Arkansas public power providers solicited proposals from specific firm for engineering and legal analysis, the firm of Nixon Peabody, LLC was selected to provide legal services and the firm of GDS was selected to provide engineering services.”

The resolution adds, “The city’s proportional share is anticipated to less than 10 percent of the total cost of services and shall be paid from the operating budget of the North Little Rock Electric Department.”

In other business, the council approved a resolution to authorize an agreement between Pulaski County and the city of North Little Rock for animal population control services.

Pulaski County desires to utilize the services of the city’s animal shelter.

The city’s animal shelter is willing to provide its assistance and services to the county’s animal services department, according to the resolution.

According to the service agreement, the county will pay the city $75,000 for providing this service throughout 2014.

The council also approved a resolution expressing North Little Rock’s application to Metroplan for Jump Start project funds.

Metroplan is seeking to “jump start” sustainable projects in Central Arkansas by providing site specific development plans for a select number of neighborhood sub-areas, according to the resolution.

“Metroplan’s Jump Start Project will focus on areas (not corridors) for the revitalization and re-purposing of existing neighborhoods or areas and green field development and will provide planning funds to evaluate selected neighborhood sub-areas and recommend regulatory and development options to create more livable urban settings,” reads the resolution.

North Little Rock has made application to Metroplan for the study of three of its neighborhoods (Baring Cross, Levy and Park Hill) with final selection to be made by Metroplan.

The city’s cost for each neighborhood study will be $50,000, representing a 20 percent local match of $40,000 plus a $10,000 share for media costs, states the resolution.

“The city feels it is in its best interests to participate in and support the Jump Start Project and will provide financial support for one neighborhood study at a total investment of $50,000,” according to the resolution.

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