4 January 2007 DCRSD Meeting Notes
Present: Hankins, Chairman, Dennerline, Pruss, Enzweiler, Fehrman, Maxwell, and new member, Jimmy Adams.
Also present: Kramer, Attorney, Baer, Health Dept, Quinn, Engineer, and Benning, secretary.
[NOTE: With apologies to John Maxwell regarding my previous statement in December, 2006 notes regarding absenteeism on the DCRSD board. By-laws revised in 1/2006 state that a member MAY be removed if they miss 4 consecutive meetings or 8 total in a year. I had previously written that it was 6 total. In light of the new monthly meeting concept, 8 might be too large a number and the board may want to look at their by-laws.]
Hankins welcomed new member, Jimmy Adams, who replaced Patrick Holland.
[NOTE: Pat Holland was the commissioner at large member to the board. The other two members are Pruss and Enzweiler appointed by commissioners. According to by-laws one of them must own real estate in Caesar Creek, Clay, Washington, Hogan, Sparta, or center Township. The other must own real estate in Jackson, Kelso, York, or Manchester Township.]
Officers were re-elected to be the same as last year- Hankins, Chairman, Fehrman, VC, and Pruss, Treasurer.
Treasurer’s report was presented.
Cole Lane and Stewart St project began this week with Lykins. Line is low pressure at about 10 psi on a 2-inch line. Completion date was corrected to April 4th.
Louis William Baker and his father (who lived there about 50 years or more from his conversation) presented some concerns on Stewart Street, primarily with the ability for any of the neighbors there to pay the high costs of hooking up to the system. Apparently the county is putting in the main line and Aurora is in charge of who can be hired to tap in the residents. Some were hoping to be able to do the work themselves as they are on fixed incomes or disability. Mr. Baker also let them know of all the violations from Aurora and the huge volumes of sewage that had been dumped into the creek there. He has pictures of it.
Hankins informed them that Aurora was tripling the size of pumps there and correcting issues. They said there was another neighbor who could not sell their home because of the sewage issue. They paid Aurora $2500 per Baker in order to cover the costs of the grinder perhaps. Then they could sell the house. Board did not know anything about that. There are still no final figures from Aurora on rates and fees. Hankins will let them know when they have final costs. They will have to contact Aurora regarding hook-up excavation.
[NOTE: If residents of Stewart St, can’t afford to hook-up, and they can’t sell unless they have hook-up, will this further reduce the price of sale of their homes? It isn’t logical to go into an economically depressed neighborhood and expect people to afford several thousand dollars in hook-up fees. Will these people be forced from their homes?]
Serenity Ridge- Kramer sent draft interlocal agreement to Mr. Waterfill on 12/22/06. No reply yet. Tri Township charges $0.30/meter to read. Excavation costs were $8-12 per foot. They have option to run partial line to lot 5 by Tranquility Court if others don’t sign on. This captures 7 out of 10 vacant properties. It will be at a higher cost per lot though.
One of the lot owners informed the board that she didn’t want to ruffle any feathers, but that Jay Tucker adamantly stated to her that CTA extensions were not piggy backed… This discussion was dropped.
She also requested the meeting minutes of all the DCRSD so she could track their progress. She was also reading the blog- which she said was the “only way she was getting any information.” She questioned why the blog kept mentioning – BUYER BEWARE- and why these lots were even sold. She saw nothing on her plat or info that indicated buyer beware. [NOTE: I turned around and informed her at this point that it came from the plan commission meeting notes when Serenity Ridge was originally approved.]
Board members informed her that no one disputes the fact that the subdivision was poorly done, which was probably why the developer left town. Hankins went on to say that the blogosphere was an interesting place but that you have to take what you see there as being worth a grain of salt because no one is accountable in any way shape or fashion for what they write there. She will contact Benning to get copies of minutes.
[NOTE: The Public Forum blogsite is a free public service. My meeting notes posted on the blogsite clearly identify the difference between what went on at the meeting and what is inserted as explanation, background information, or opinion by inserting a bracketed bold type NOTE section.
DCRSD could become more citizen friendly and efficient by posting their agendas and draft minutes and/or approved minutes on the county’s website. A digital copy of the Woolpert Study posted there would also be helpful to citizens and many other county offices.]
Hankins stated that it was brought to his attention that the DCRSD correspondence lacks a professional appearance. He directed Benning to get with Stephanie to order letterheads.
[NOTE: On the subject of letters from the DCRSD board recommending board members be re-appointed, there seems to be a disconnect between what is said at the DCRSD meeting and what actually gets sent in the letter or verbally transmitted behind the scenes. Rather than repeating this duplicitous practice, it would be kinder to say nothing at all to the member up for appointment. The decision really rests with the appointing authority anyway.]
The next DCRSD regular meeting will be Feb 1st.
The Woolpert Study will be presented at a special meeting on Jan 25th at 7 PM in the Adm. Building Meeting Room 3rd floor. Board will receive the study at their homes about a week in advance of the meeting.
Dennerline brought up Chuck Andres and septic inspections and said that the Health Dept should handle this. Baer said a regional sewer district can encompass the entire thing including a Septic District- but we have no funding. Costs seemed to be the issue. Some comments were made concerning inspecting tanks without complaints as being non- productive. Hankins has issues with this- thinks it might be a way to prove how many are failed. I spoke up at this point and noted that cities and VRUC has failures in the sewer plants too. I think that maintenance is the issue in both cases.
Maxwell asked about the sewer analysis from Greendale to Guilford. He is not in favor of pressure lines there. He asked if there was a route that could get there by gravity and no lift stations. Quinn told him along the creek there is a route that can do that. But it costs more than pressure. Quinn is concerned there are only 110 homes to feed onto this line. Gravity cost at $1 million would be about $10,000 per home, which is the same as the cost of a new septic system. There was talk of trying to get Greendale to treat for $1 –2 or so rather than $5.60.
[NOTE: Maxwell is right. Putting gravity here will look like a smart move years from now. Every road feeding to SR1 comes in at a hillside. Any development above on those roads can be fed via gravity to this line. SR1 itself should not be developed, as it is the main N-S artery on the east side of the county. But the feeding roads eventually might be. Greendale has 12 inch narrowed to 10 inch at the end already in place per Jacobsen. Maintenance is the issue that we are dealing with all over the county. Putting in a low maintenance gravity system is best. PNS could have provided a lot of winter flow and some summer event flow for this line had it been in place prior to them building a line up their slopes with lift stations.]
Maxwell wanted more info on the interlocal agreements. Aurora’s agreement will be worked on some more at Tues meeting with their attorney. There is a small amount of excess capacity in the lines on Stewart and Cole, but not a lot per Quinn.
LMH agreement is on hold till they hear back from Waterfill.
St. Leon’s contact is John Watson, their attorney. Kramer said that St. Leon will serve where their lines are and have had projects approved and designed outside the town that they have capacity for, but the usage is not taken up yet, as they are not completely built out. County gets the rest of the territory. If we want to tap, we apply to the town and present and pay their engineer to analyze. He can require us to pay for upgrades as needed. All this has to be pre-approved and we have some financial interest in their plant.
Maxwell said this is how they do business with St. Leon also. We pay for the analysis. Sometimes they just end up writing St. Leon a big check and then we can hook-up.
Kramer said that the board has a map of all St. Leon lines that was given to the former attorney. Quinn also noted that there should be a 3rd party arbitrator in these agreements in case they don’t agree.
DCRSD is eligible for a wholesale rate but there is no percentage set forth in the agreement yet- we need to know what this is per Kramer. St. Leon wants us to pay 45% of expansion of phase 1 for about 145,000 gallons. There are a lot of master meters in the St. Leon system. Quinn is not a fan of master meters. They need a lot of flow to work accurately.
They want to wait for Woolpert before finishing up agreement with St. Leon.
Hankins noted with two TIF districts in St. Leon area we need to have capacity for development there. We need to get capacity Hankins said or else there will not be any shovel ready sites for business. Currently St. Leon has COMMITTED to 80 % of their capacity, but their USAGE is not that high yet, as build out is not finished in some developments.
Meeting adjourned at 9:10 PM
Christine Brauer Mueller