If you're wondering how much money it costs to run a city the size of Billings, here's one small indicator.
Buried in the City Council's consent agenda -- in which numerous items are voted on all at once unless an item is specifically separated by council vote -- is a $2 million contract to expand the city landfill.
This is part of the landfill's Phase 5 expansion project and will involve the construction of a new cell. Cells 3 and 4 are now in use and are expected to be filled to capacity in two to three years.
The new cell project will include installation of a liner and the construction of access roads and drainage ditches.
Nine bids were submitted, the highest of which was a little more than $2.9 million. The low bid, which the council is being asked to accept, was from Montana Civil Contractors Inc., for $2,041,324.
The Solid Waste Division, which is building the new cell, is a self-sufficient division that relies on fees rather than property taxes.