Archive for Thursday, June 30, 2011

Council agrees special meeting needed on professional services

June 30, 2011

The Tonganoxie City Council members agreed Monday they needed a special meeting to discuss the city’s approach to professional services but could not settle on the appropriate date.

The city’s contracts from professional services, particularly that for engineering from BG Consultants, have been the subject of council comment in recent months, with council members questioning costs, details of billing and the possibility of bidding specific projects.

Responding to Mayor Jason Ward’s observation that there seemed enough concern among council members to warrant a special meeting on the issue, Councilman Chris Donnelly said the council should review the experiences of other cities to find out what the current best practices were being used for municipal professional services.

It was agreed city staff should review what other cities were paying for such professional services as planning, engineering and auditing.

The snag to scheduling such a special meeting soon was that staff was preoccupied with preparing the 2012 budget. Council members agreed there was no pressing need to schedule the meeting soon, and Councilman Bill Peak said the discussion should be on policy and not muddled with budget concerns.

Councilman Dennis Bixby suggested September would be a good time for the discussion as it would be about four months before the annual professional contracts expire.

Bixby also propose one possible change to be discussed, which would be to share an in-house city engineer with Basehor or another city.

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