Merced eyes alcohol ed for young people

The Merced City Council on Monday will weigh an agreement to address excessive and underage drinking with the help of a county agency, as well as award maintenance contracts and hear more on the proposed youth council.

The California Department of Health Care Services awarded a $330,068 grant to the Merced County Mental Health Department to combat underage and excessive drinking. The multiagency Merced Community Violence, Intervention and Prevention Task Force, or Merced ComVIP, would partner with the county agency and local law enforcement to implement the grant.

The council will meet at 7 p.m. on the second floor of the Merced Civic Center, 678 W. 18th St.

The UC Merced Police Department, Merced Police Department, Merced County Probation Department, Merced County District Attorney’s Office and the city attorney’s office would be involved in the effort related to alcohol.

The partnership would target excessive and binge drinking by those ages 12 to 25. The grant would pay for extra police staffing during enforcement periods and educational activities.

Also on the agenda are two contracts related to sewer-main maintenance. The first would award $528,965 to Chesterfield, Mo.-based Insituform Technologies LLC for work at Highway 59 and Cooper Avenue.

The second contract, worth $281,546, is set to be awarded to Michels Pipeline Construction of Salem, Ore.

The council also is being asked to accept a report from students who created the framework for the proposed Merced Youth Council. The students introduced their recommendations to the council earlier this month.

The plan would create a seven-member youth council. Two members each would come from north, central and south Merced; one member would be selected from the city at-large. The plan calls for the members to be city residents ages 13 to 19 who could serve up to two two-year terms.

A closed session is planned at 6:30 p.m.