Manhattan in Nevada is far different from its namesake in New York: a tiny mining town with a few hundred residents.
But Nye County Commissioner Lorinda Wichman said engineers were using figures for urban areas in calculating the cost of the reconstruction of eight-tenths of a mile of Main Street in Manhattan, Nevada that inflated the cost from original estimates of $1.2 million to $4 million.
As a result Nye County’s share will increase from $133,200 to $203,200, which county commissioners grudgingly approved Tuesday. The rest is being funded by the Secure Rural Schools fund, which is a U.S. Forest Service program that allocates money to rural counties with large forest service acreage.
“We’re done after this point,” Nye County Public Works Director Dave Fanning assured commissioners.
He said Nye County public works will be surveying the eastern part of town as its share of the work.
Nye County Commissioner Frank Carbone said if the county doesn’t know what the federal engineers are doing, they will keep coming back asking for more money.
“This is where it stops. This is where we’re saying a not-to-exceed amount,” Commission Chairman Dan Schinhofen said.
Fanning said the county is going to make the project work, even f they have to scale back the project.
“Now they realize Manhattan is actually where we were standing, not in the middle of New York. The prices went up considerably to get the aggregate and the batch plant and everything they need out there,” Wichman said.
She added Manhattan residents would be happy to even get a well-bladed, gravel road rather than spending $4 mllion on a strip of pavement eight-tenths of a mile long.
“As a last resort if we can’t do something, take something out there and get the pavement out of the way so people are not bottoming out on residual pavement,” Wichman said. “They handed it off to an engineer who’s never been there.”
On another capital project in Gabbs, commissioners voted to approve a second amendment with the Nevada Division of Environmental Protection to use a remaining $48,518 in the loan from the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund to replace the floor of a new water storage tank.
The county had received an $806,376 principal forgiveness loan from NDEP to drill a new water well and install 2,000 feet of transmission main to replace the old water system which exceeded federal limits on fluoride. That had to be supplemented with a first amendment increasing the loan by $215,000 on Feb. 5, 2013.