RIDGELAND — Aldermen unanimously approved bidding out three distinct contracts for lawn services citywide, with one contract set to expire next month.

Public Works Director Mike McCollum told aldermen last week that the contract for work on Northpark Drive and Lake Harbour Drive is set to expire Feb. 28. That contract is currently held by US Lawns at $11,573 annually.

The two remaining bids concerned a landscape maintenance contract for the I-55 interchange and roundabout also held by US Lawns and eight other grass cutting and edging projects citywide currently held by Smith Lawns.

McCollum said in all the above contracts represent 34 distinct projects he calls “cuts.”

The second US contract expires in June and costs $94,774.92 annually. The Smith Lawns’ contract involves sewer easements and roadside maintenance on Pear Orchard Road, Lake Harbour Drive, Wheatley Street, Rice Road, Highway 51 at the Natchez Trace, Steed Road from Sunny Brook Road to the Highland Colony Parkway and Highland Colony roadside maintenance form the north city limit to the south. It costs the city $162,079.50 annually.

Ward 6 Alderman Wesley Hamlin said that he had noticed part of the town contained in these contracts had been left overgrown for some time over the past year. 

Alderman-at-Large D.I. Smith said that he had overgrowth specifically at the city line between Madison and Ridgeland.

McCollum acknowledged that that was the case and that on at least one occasion it was true because a contract had not kicked into effect yet and the unseasonable weather had spurred unanticipated growth spurts in the grass.

“Can we make sure these contracts deal with summer coming early,” Smith asked.

McCollum said he would put what he could in the contract, but in other cases, the city would likely have to “deal with it themselves.”