July 3 – Metropolitan Utilities District Board of Directors

Key updates and decisions were presented by various leaders from Metro and MUD (Metropolitan Utilities District). Shane Hunter, head of MUD security, initiated the session with a safety briefing, emphasizing the importance of security measures. Kendall Minor, the senior vice president and chief operations officer, discussed the swift and effective response to a recent flood event by the Florence plant team, noting the resilience of the plant and equipment. Adam Gartner, interim director of plant engineering, highlighted ongoing infrastructure projects, including the cast iron water main replacement near South 114th and West Center Road, which aims to replace outdated mains and enhance service reliability. Additionally, Gartner presented updates on new water mains in the Hill subdivision, which were completed under budget by Kersten Construction.

Jim Knight, vice president of gas operations, and Masa Niiya, vice president of engineering, provided insights into gas infrastructure improvements and the integration of new ultrasonic meters. Knight announced a $76,500 contract with CHI for gas meter installations, citing their consistency and past performance. Niiya discussed the challenges of adopting ultrasonic meters, noting the need for extensive training and the involvement of gas design experts. The team plans to utilize a $10 million grant from the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) to support these initiatives. Niiya highlighted main extensions for water service and fire protection in the Wix South Pointe Subdivision, emphasizing the significant investment required.

Bonnie Savine, vice president of human resources, reported on staffing updates, revealing an increase in full-time employees and the introduction of temporary and intern positions. Savine also detailed wage and salary increases, including promotional and job progression adjustments for several employees. The meeting concluded with unanimous approvals for the cast iron water main replacement, acceptance of contracts and final estimates, and bids on materials and contracts. Upcoming meetings will delve deeper into capital expenditures, the implementation of wage increases, and updates on material and contract bids.

Meeting documented by Shantesa McIntosh

To read the full meeting notes, click here.

By Omaha Documenters

Omaha Documenters is a program that empowers citizens to actively participate in local governance by documenting public meetings. This initiative enhances transparency and accountability by making critical information accessible to the community, fostering informed public discourse, and promoting civic engagement. Through its network of dedicated Documenters, the program bridges the gap between government entities and the public, ensuring that decisions affecting the community are transparent and inclusive. For more information and to get involved, visit documenters.org.

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