Shetek Area Water and Sewer CommissionMinutes from October 16, 2000 Public Meeting
Commission Members Present: Jack VonBokern, Leroy Biren and Delores Sell
Commission Members Absent: John McClure, Ralph Knapp, Harold Graphenteen, Mark Hagen, Cornelius Smit, and Marcia Schreier.
Others Present: Jack Griffin from RLK, Bud Sell, Pete Bloemendaal, and Bob Ossefoort.
Support Staff Present: Murray County Water Resources Administrator Tom Kresko and Office Secretary Jean Christoffels.
Jack VonBokern opened the public hearing by giving a brief review of what has changed with the plan since the last public hearing. To summarize, we are working with the City of Currie and their lagoon system, which is further away than the original proposed lagoon, which was to be located on the south side of the lake. The priority process tries to encourage regionalization, which could result in more points.
Background Jack Griffin, RLK, went over the outline beginning with the background of the Facility Plan. (See attached Outline) The plan, as adopted in January 1999, final discharges to Beaver Creek. Also, regionalizing with both the City of Garvin and the City of Currie would be beneficial to the Shetek project; pointing this project higher, increasing the chance for loan dollars. Another advantage would be bringing more users together to help defer the cost of the treatment facility.
Purpose Jack Griffin explained that the purpose of this Public Hearing is to look at a Facility Plan Amendment, which is a revision of the original plan from January 1999; talk about the new plan, make it public information, and then to adopt it as the new plan. In meetings with the regulatory and funding agencies, they encourage the regionalization of the project by continuing to work with City of Currie.
Project Scope and Changes Instead of having a waste water treatment facility on the south side of Lake Shetek, Jack Griffin stated that we would go to the City of Currie and have them expand their current treatment facilities to accommodate the flows from the Shetek and Garvin project. This would eliminate a treatment facility and there would be no new discharge NPDES permit, which this would become just a collection system project with the added infrastructure of putting forcemain over to the City of Currieâs existing facility. With this amended project, the SAWSC District would pay a connection fee to the City of Currie, which would be the money Currie would have available to expand their facility. Currie would remain the owner of the treatment facility and they have an existing discharge permit to the Des Moines River. The rest of the project essentially remains the same, except for some re-alignment of the sewer pipe on the south side to accommodate this plan and additional forcemain infrastructure to get the sewage all the way over to Currie.
The SAWSC and the City of Garvin will execute and enter into inter-municipal agreements to have wastewater treated by City of Currie. Jack Griffin stated that it is a very workable agreement for different entities to share a treatment facility. The SAWSC Facility Plan document now excludes the City of Currie from the planning area, population and EDU determination, and design flow and loading calculations. Currie will be their own entity; they will not be part of the district project, but part of the coordination effort.
Project Costs There were cost changes based on changes in the plan, which occurred in three areas: unit prices, collection system layout modifications and construction costs. It has been a couple years since the unit prices were last looked at, Jack Griffin said they wanted to make sure they had prices that were accurate and good estimations; there were some changes on how costs have changed over the last couple of years. Also, there were collection system layout modifications along the south shore of Lake Shetek and additional forcemain infrastructure, which were added cost items. Between these two additions, there was an estimated cost increase of $481,877. The wastewater treatment facility construction costs were eliminated, but in place of that, enough money must be given to Currie to expand their facility adequately to accommodate the district to utilize. With this change, there was a cost reduction of $569,613. All in all, the total project cost went down $87,736, leaving an overall total project cost of $11,687,859. The Operation, Maintenance and Replacement Costs have been reduced to $46,205 per year rather than $53,300 per year, which is the reflection of additional users; more people sharing the costs.
Proposed Financing Applications have been made for Grant and Loan funding assistance through USDA-Rural Development, and Public Facilities Authority â Wastewater Infrastructure Fund (WIF). These two funds work together and it becomes difficult to know how much grant we are going after. You can get up to 45% of the cost from Rural Development â which would be $5.25 million for our project â they donât have that much so we would not get that much in one funding year. Through the Public Facilities Authority, they have a $4 million cap â they have a formula in order to identify what you are eligible for up to $4 million â which our project does qualify for, but there is a ranking system to get your project up there. It is not only an environmental decision to do this project, but an economical one. After you take the grant dollars out of the total project cost, the remaining project costs could be assessed to the benefiting property or charged in the form of user costs; which has not been decided yet. The funding agencies expect each user to pay a minimum payment of 1.7% of the mean household income. The mean household income for this area is just under $27,000, which equates to a user paying about $458 per year or $38 per month, right in the range we are looking for. If the capital costs were paid up front and only pay monthly for the Operating and Maintenance Costs, it is equivalent to each user paying $6,000 - $8,000 one time up front, then $10 per month for connection. Pete Bloemendaal asked why Lake Sarah is not included in this project. Jack Griffin explained that Lake Sarah is included and always has been; the maps only show the southern portion of the project due to the fact that that is location of the changes to the plan. Sewer lines are proposed all the way around the lake except for a couple areas that were determined not cost-effective; and pipe around Lake Sarah. Once the project around the lakes is complete, then Garvin would connect in with forcemain by Lake Sarah point. When the entire project is completed, Garvin, Lake Sarah, Lake Shetek and Currie will all have their sewer lines going to the same treatment facility.
Other Associated Project Costs There are some other associated costs to each of the homeowners once the collection system is built and the treatment facility is in place and ready to be hooked up to. The project costs include a main line pipe down the right of way of most of the roadways, but does not include the actual connection from the road to the home. That becomes the responsibility of each homeowner to make that connection.
The estimated costs of those connections are:
4â service pipe installed - $9 to $18 per foot; depending on the topography, whether the pipe is deep or shallow, trees, or driveways. Connection fee to trunk main - $150 Average unit cost - $1,200 to $2,500 Abandon old on-site ISTS - $400 to $500;
drainfield does not have to be dug up, just abandon it;
mound system can also be just abandoned, but most will try to get rid of it; septic tanks have to be pumped clean, hole punched in bottom and filled up with sand.
A question was raised as to if there will have to be lift pumps or lift stations out of the houses. Jack Griffin stated that there may be a few. The system being proposed is gravity for the majority, but there may be an isolated few that will need the lifts. For these other associated project costs, there are Clean Water Partnership Loan funds available at 3%, for 5 or 10 years assessed on the taxes.
Project Schedule The facility plan is being reviewed by the MPCA to get their approval; the Environmental Review by the MPCA is also in the process of being done; Funding applications have been submitted and the current point ranking is being assessed by the agencies to verify the points for this year; and the Public Hearing tonight is to get the changes to the plan amended, a formality so the revised plan can be adopted. Basically, we wait for the funding. The agencies begin meeting as early as October, but wonât make any announcements until February. With a successful application announcement, that would initiate the district to start taking action, beginning with a public hearing. Based on the outcome of the public hearing, authorize the plans and specifications of funds and begin design. If the notification comes in February, the design of the project will take some time; it would probably take two to three years before it would be an operable system. Jack VonBokern stated that nothing will happen until we get funding. If funding doesnât happen, we would have to make a decision as to whether or not to flush the system and turn it over to Murray County and have septic systems upgraded that way. This is the same project as discussed in January except for the addition of the City of Currie. We will not be joining Currie in a political way â just a business arrangement. Pete Bloemendaal asked if the system in Currie has to be upgraded or are we pushing them. Jack VonBokern stated that Currie has to upgrade their system. Jack Griffin stated that we would hand Currie a check, for our connection fee, to build a system to accommodate the SAWSC. Tom Kresko stated that Currie would use their existing lagoons and add cells as needed when we come on line and it is PCA that told them they need to upgrade and expand the lagoons. Bob Ossefoort asked if the land for cells is being purchased. Jack VonBokern said that once the funding is approved, then the land would be purchased. The property owner is a willing seller and the cost is less than the original. A question was raised as to if the pipe going from Currie to the lagoon would have to be upgraded and would that be the same pipe from the district. Jack VonBokern stated that it would be separate pipes and in fact it would be a larger size. Jack Griffin said the pipe size had to be increased because of the increased distance to the lagoon. Our pipe would go around the City of Currie. Jack VonBokern said the site is 80 acres â east of Currieâs current lagoons. Leroy Biren wanted to know when would be the right time to consider a grey water system, where you pump the water out. Jack Griffin explained that there is not much of an advantage to have a grey water system. With this type of a system, you would have to have tanks on everyoneâs property and that becomes something that has to be managed. The use of a grey water system typically is done when you are trying to get rid of the water through soils; you are looking for the water to disappear just by absorbing into the soil. You would only need one cell, but you would have a management problem having all the septic tanks, making sure the people have them pumped, along with the sludge management. Jack believes that the Operation and Maintenance of a grey water system, over the long haul, would be more complicated and difficult, and become a higher burden on the district. Are farmers within the district going to be allowed to hook into this system. Jack VonBokern stated that that option has not yet been looked at. We wouldnât force them, but the option would be there for them. Jack Griffin said that it would have to be handled on a case by case basis depending on how much pipe it would take to connect them in. Pete Bloemendaal wanted to know if livestock facilities would be connected also. Jack Griffin said only homes. Jack VonBokern said that they will keep everyone informed and then adjourned the meeting.
SAWSC minutes recorded and written by Murray County Water Office Secretary Jean Christoffels.
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Shetek Area Water and Sewer Public Hearing - October 16, 2000, Minutes