Bats, bullets, bow-wows: Regular board of public works business includes briefing on full shelter

[Ed. note: As of Tuesday, all of the very good boys and girls in the photos above are available for adoption at the Bloomington’s animal shelter.]

“If you’re looking for that furr-ever, friend, we have them down at the shelter right now,” public works director Adam Wason reported to the board of public works at its regular meeting on Tuesday.

Wason said the shelter had recently had an influx of animals and could use some relief.

Wason added that he is thinking that the shelter will run an adoption special this weekend, waiving fees on all dogs, to try to get some space cleared out at the shelter.

Bloomington’s animal shelter is located on South Walnut Street a bit north of Gordon Pike. Hours and contact information for the shelter are listed on the animal shelter website.

The city maintains an online listing of all animals available for adoption.

Business transacted by the board at its Tuesday meeting included bats (the flying mammals, not Louisville Sluggers) and bullets, among other items.

The bat-related item on the board’s agenda was the approval of a $10,800 contract with J.R. Ellington Tree Experts for tree removal along 1st Street. That’s the company owned by former state representative Jeff Ellington.

Some of the trees to be removed are related to the 1st Street reconstruction project, while others are related to the Phase 1 East project—which involves the redevelopment of the former IU Hospital site at Rogers and 2nd streets.

The bat-connection was explained to the board by project engineer Neil Kopper. There are environmental requirements requiring the trees to be removed sometime between Nov. 15 and March 31—to help reduce negative impacts to potential bat habitat.

Ellington’s bid was less than half of the next-highest bid and less than four times the highest bid. The four bids on the tree removal project were: J.R. Ellington Tree Experts ($10,800); Groomer Construction Inc. ($24,600); Bluestone Tree ($28,466); and Monroe LLC ($42,700).

The bullet-related item included a 50-gallon barrel full of “projectile lead”—training bullets that were fired at the gun range in Bloomington police department’s training facility. The same agenda item also included two barrels full of spent brass shell casings.

The board has to declare the items as “surplus” so that they can be sold or otherwise disposed of. The declaration of the casings and bullets as surplus was handled as a part of the consent agenda at Tuesday’s board meeting.

The previous day, at a work session to preview the agenda, the board was briefed by Zach Weisheit, the senior police officer who serves as the rangemaster at the police training facility.

Weisheit told the board that the brass is probably worth about $1,200 per barrel, and the lead around $480 per barrel. That’s a rough estimate, Weisheit said, based on the prices that had been paid in the past by Bloomington Iron & Metal.