DEWITT — The DeWitt City Council has awarded the bid for the Sixth Avenue Reconstruction Downtown Streetscape Project 2006 to Portzen Construction of Dubuque.

Portzen was the low bidder at $2,654,730 for aluminum/ steel light poles or $2,6l9,648 for concrete light poles. The council indicated a preference for the concrete poles. That bid was 0.3 percent below the engineer’s estimate.

In all, there were six bidders with bids ranging from $2.6 million to $4.28 million. Four bidders were in the $3.046 million to $3.326 million range. Other bidders were Tschiggfrie Construction of Dubuque, Wicks Construction of Decorah, Clinton Engineering of Clinton, Horsfield Construction of Epworth and C.H. Langman and Sons of Rock Island, Ill.

The Sixth Avenue project is set to begin this spring and be completed at the latest in August 2007. A second phase of the project, which accesses federal funds, will be bid through the Iowa Department of Transportation in Ames on Feb. 21.

Recognizing outstanding service to the community, several awards also were presented Monday by Police Chief Gene Ellis. Kari Lane was named December Citizen of the Month for her work as part of the DeWitt Junior Women’s campaign to make improvements at Lincoln Park in the downtown area.

Also receiving awards were officer Shawn Zeimet and Reserve Police Captain Ted Hacker. Ellis said Zeimet was selected by his fellow officers as 2005 Officer of the Year for leading the department in a number of arrests and developing the K-9 program as its first dog handler. Hacker received the Chief’s Award for organizing the scheduling of events and developing a computerized database for the reserves to track their activity.

Ellis also presented the police department’s annual report. He said there was a 9.6 percent decrease in calls for service in 2005 and the clearance rate for investigations was at 54 percent. A total of 135 people (190 in 2004) were arrested and 173 criminal charges were filed.

In addition, the council approved a request from Ellis to apply for a $8,368 Governor’s Traffic Safety Bureau grant. The grant, due Feb. 6, will pay for one in-car video camera and 150 overtime hours. It is part of a state program to prevent alcohol-related traffic injuries and fatalities.

The council appointed Linda Duesing and Paul Hill for one-year terms on the Eastern Iowa Regional Housing Authority and approved increasing the charge for replacement recycling bins to $9. The city recently purchased new bins for the first time in many years at more than $8 each.

In emergency business, the council voted to have a recently-installed sign at JRB Company in the industrial park moved.

City regulations require the sign setback be 10 feet from the property line. The sign now sits 2 feet into the city right-of-way and is a vision hazard.

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