Council to consider pavilion contract, water tower antenna agreement

NEGAUNEE — The Negaunee City Council will consider a $63,200 engineering contract with GEI Consultants for a pavilion at Jackson Mine Park during its regular meeting at 7 p.m. Thursday at the Negaunee Senior Center.

The pavilion project, which was proposed several years ago, is being funded by a roughly $70,200 grant from the Cliffs Natural Resources/Eagle Mine Community Fund; an $8,500 contribution from the Negaunee Community Fund; a $291,000 Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund grant; $90,600 for city employee labor and materials; and $25,000 from the Iron Ore Recreation Authority.

City officials are not required to put the project out for bids, according to an agenda supplement for the meeting.

The council will also consider a site lease agreement with T-Mobile which would allow the wireless carrier to construct and operate a cellular communications antenna on the city’s water tower along Pioneer Avenue.

In June 2016, the city entered into a similar agreement with Verizon, whose cellular communications antenna is presently on the water tank.

The Negaunee Planning Commission reviewed T-Mobile’s site plan request and at its Aug. 28 meeting recommended the plan for approval by the council.

If the agreement is supported, the city will collect $1,900 per month from T-Mobile to lease the site, for a total of $22,800 annually.

The initial lease term will be five years with an automatic renewal for three successive terms for a total of 15 years unless the company decides to terminate the lease prior to the end of a successive term, a letter from City Attorneys Raymond O’Dea and Jeremy Pickens states.

Under the agreement, the city must “permit access to the tower, help with permitting and zoning as necessary, (maintain) compliance with local, state and federal laws, and prohibit interference with others,” such as Verizon, the attorneys’ memo states.

The city’s proposed 2019 budget is also expected to be considered during the meeting. The Negaunee City Charter requires the city manager to submit the proposed budget to the council yearly during the regular September council meeting.