Officials say agreement with Reukert & Mielke has worked well since staff position was trimmed
When Village of Saukville officials eliminated the position of staff engineer two years ago, they knew they would have to seek technical expertise on engineering issues.
That expertise has come from the Waukesha engineering firm Reukert & Mielke, and officials have been more than satisfied with the relationship.
The village began contracting with R&M for village engineering services in April of 2014, and spent $179,000 with the firm the first year.
The engineering contract was renewed last year, and again last month in an agreement that runs through February 2017.
During its second year as the village’s designated engineering firm, it charged the village $87,858 for engineering services.
That included $25,459 for work on the design of Well No. 6, which is being installed in the business park, and $25,587 in planning for the O’Reilly Auto Parts project. That latter cost was passed on to the developer.
Another $19,745 was spent on preliminary engineering work for the reconstruction of Center and Church streets.
The approach of that major road reconstruction, which will be tackled next year along with the reconstruction of Highway W, gave the village no reason to look for engineering services anywhere else.
In addition, the engineering staff assisted in drafting the revised special assessment policy that was also unanimously approved by the Village Board earlier this month.
By reaffirming the restrictions of the assessment policy, officials hope to head off the kind of confusion that accompanied the reconstruction of Linden Street three years ago.
According to the new contract, Sean Sullivan, a senior project manager with the firm, will be assigned as the village engineer working on an as-needed basis.
The village’s previous senior project manager had been David Arnott.
The contract specifies that the village will receive 48 “donated” hours from the firm, an arrangement that is offered to encourage inquiries from the Village Board, Plan Commission, Community Development Authority and Industrial Review Board, as well as consultations with the village administrator.
Beyond that donated time, the charge for Sullivan’s services will be $135 an hour — a $6 an hour increase over the previous contract.
When additional expertise is required, the village will have access to R&M’s professional staff, with hourly charges ranging from $220 per hour for the services of the company president to $67 an hour for a construction review technician.
When the village last had a staff engineer in 2014, the village budget included nearly $113,000 for salary and benefits for the engineer.
However, it was common for the village to also contract with an outside engineering firm in addition to having a staff engineer for larger projects.