INDIAN SHORES – In the wake of Hurricane Irma, the Indian Shores seawall took a hit. At the Dec. 12 meeting, the Town Council voted unanimously to enter into an agreement with Speeler Foundations, Inc. for the repair and reconstruction of the seawall. The agreement is contingent upon the town attorney’s final approval and is not to exceed $36,000.

Bonnie Dhonau, the town’s administrator, presented the report by the marine engineer, Rube Clarson who inspected the town’s seawall after Irma. After requesting quotes from four vendors, the town received two quotes for repairs and “a third contractor said he could not provide a quote until the engineering plans were complete,” according to a memorandum by Dhonau.

In order to expedite the process, Dhonau requested that the Town Council waive the requirement of three independent competitive sealed bids for the project since that is permitted in the case of emergencies or special circumstances. Since the initial seawall damage from Irma in September and the marine engineer’s evaluation at that time, the town’s public services supervisor, Michael Scrogham, reported that the damage has been expanding. Dhonau met with representatives from FEMA the end of November and FEMA “suggested we (Indian Shores) proceed” with the repair.

Speeler Foundations Inc., quoted the town $30,500 with the feasibility of getting the work started in January. Potential vendors (within a few thousand dollars either way) were not available to do the work for six to seven months, and, although Speeler Foundations was booked also, they agreed to hold a space open for Indian Shores in January.

“FEMA advised that permanent work is being reimbursed at 75 percent,” said Dhonau.

This extends up to another 15 percent to cover mitigation measures beyond restoration to pre-storm condition. Dhonau indicated that adding weep holes and higher-grade vinyl may fall into that mitigation category.

Getting the seawall repairs underway in January has the added benefit of the town having “a sturdy seawall in place before our St. Patrick’s Day Festival,” said Dhonau.

New tractor

Dhonau submitted a request to the town to trade in the town’s 2001 John Deere tractor for a John Deere 1025R sub-compact utility tractor that includes a loader with bucket and a backhoe for use by the Public Services Department.

The additional equipment and vehicle capabilities will aid in the removal of turtles, dolphins, sharks, and so forth. This would also make it possible to fill in holes on the beach.

Including the trade-in, the net purchase price for the vehicle is $8,598.45 and is included in the fiscal 2018 budget. This is $1,401.55 under the $10,000 allowable in the budget.

The Town Council unanimously approved the request.

Medical marijuana

An ordinance prohibiting medical marijuanal treatment dispensing facilities within the boundaries of the town of Indian Shores passed unanimously on its second and final reading. The ordinance provides for a moratorium contingency, conflict with other ordinances, and inclusion in the land development code for complete compliance.

Florida League

The town unanimously passed a resolution supporting the Florida League of Cities 2018 Legislative Action Agenda concerning Home Rule that backs local self-government. According to Stephanie Waters, town clerk, a resolution like this one was recently passed in Largo.

Waste Connections

Waste Connections of Florida’s request to increase the contract price for services as allowed for in the current franchise agreement was approved unanimously by the Town Council. Although, the contract allows for an increase of two percent, Waste Connections of Florida only requested an increase of 1 percent.