Friday, March 25, 2011

25 March 2011 DCRSD Meeting with OKI

25 March 2011 DCRSD Meeting with OKI

Present: Steve Renihan, Chairman, Brett Fehrman, Barry Pruss, Rodney Dennerline, Art Wenzel
ABSENT: Jeff Stenger and Robert Lischge
Vera Benning, Secretary is absent also.

Attorney,Frank Kramer, Engineer Bob Hrezo and Bill Ewbank- County Coordinator also present

Updating the Clean Water Plan: an Overview –Presented by Travis Miller
Why they are updating the 208 water quality management plan- under section 208 of the federal clean water act. The draft map was presented. $90,437 grant from IDEM paid for the update of this plan.

Several related groups participated in the plan including an advisory committee of sewer providers, and soil water, chamber, watershed groups, and oxbow members.
Data was gathered since 2/2010 and meetings in between- plans to finalize it by June 2011.
Impairments in Dearborn County Water: Aluminum, lowered dissolved O2, e coli, impaired biotic communities, mercury and PCBs which ,though outlawed since 1979, have remained in fat soluble sections of fish etc.

Non-point sources hard to find- septic tanks, sedimentation and silt, nutrients, floatables and trash and non restricted cattle.
17 hot point areas of sewer issues were identified in the county.
Population data and projections for this plan came from IU Kelley School of Business etc.
They looked at the county future land use map and those of the cities and towns.
Wastewater mgmt agencies service areas, planned treatment capacities, operational and institutional issues were considered in the plan, as was topography, population, current and planned uses, and existing water quality.
Started with a rough proposal on a map in September. Finally got to a draft map in February.

They have been presenting it to various groups. Hope to have all stakeholder input by April 1st.


Chris Mueller- asked if they had considered as a point source of pollution- the sewer plant itself when they have spills. This can be catastrophic if the water all ends up in one place and an accident occurs.

Ralph Thompson- Washington township-have worked against this board in the past and now this board is working well. Doesn’t think that DCRSD should give away territory to the municipalities. Ordinances allow people to repair their non-working systems and not be forced to hook-up. Doesn’t completely trust city or county boards due to politics. Thinks a county wide coordination would be better. Current system seems to be working well- where county is solving problems in the county and working with municipalities and other providers as needed. Solve it at the source or go with an aggregated system. Money from city taxpayers- they do not want to pay for county users.

Dennis Kraus Sr- said Art Wenzel is the Council’s rep and speaks for their issues.

Bob Hrezo- Greendale- sees a lot of unsewered areas and it would be inappropriate to burden the cities with funding these systems- he stressed his comment was as a resident of Greendale.

Jerry Jacobson- Greendale resident. DCRSD HAS TAKEN CARE OF 3-4 PROBLEM AREAS- but was not set up to take over the whole county. You were not set up to take over and create another road block and cost to clean this up. I think you have ulterior motives in what you’re doing. This is only to verify what IDEM gave you to do. Without OKI’s blessing IDEM doesn’t get the money they need to operate.

Brett Fehrman- asked Jacobson- why SDRSD hasn’t put up money to fix problems in any other area of the county. Fehrman thinks this map is set up use the existing districts with capacity to fix things.

Art Wenzel- says they will shortly be up to 6 problems fixed by DCRSD.

Jacobson says just fix the problems- you don’t need the regional title- fix the local things first.

Steve Renihan- said they have been focused on fixing problems the past couple of years. Serenity Ridge, Cole Lane, High Ridge, etc have been done. He thinks it’s valuable that DCRSD has the areas they have in order to fix the unincorporated area problems. He thinks it was wrong for municipalities to run lines wherever they wanted and then force people who are not represented in the municipality to hook on.
It is about representation. He went on to talk about how he came to these meetings as a property owner in Serenity Ridge. Platted in 1994 by Mr. Stotts. He purchased in 2004. Now 2 leach beds are required and his lot is unbuildable. Bids were $21-24,000 for an experimental system to build out there. The county is partially to blame for allowing the subdivision to be platted and granted this way. LMH was on the wrong side of their road. St. Leon had the district on the other side, DCRSD seemed to be the entity that brought things together in order to get the problem solved. Ten residents of Serenity Ridge collected $77,000 to get a line to LMH. It took 3 years to get that ¼ mile line run. No one else represents the unincorporated area. It is also important to work with Planning and Zoning to be sure these things don’t happen in the future.

Dennis Kraus Sr verified that DCRSD’s only source of income is what County gave from RR except for fees from high Ridge.

Art Wenzel- speaking on behalf of County Council and is a surveyor. Apologized for not getting it to Travis Miller sooner. Boundaries for sewer districts should be in watershed areas. These lines are set up on township and section lines. The crooked line on South Hogan Creek divides a watershed. With SDRSD it is made up of 3 towns plus the distillery and takes the tax money from their residents. They cannot go outside that area due to tax issues for their residents. He thinks that DCRSD has to get interlocal agreements in order to use their system at SDRSD. They are the biggest provider in the area but their hands are tied. St Leon- has problems all around their district. Sunman is actually closer for western Dearborn and would better serve this as an interlocal agreement. Moores Hill has a sewer district coming on line and DCRSD agreed to let them serve some areas. There is a creek again as a dividing line. Dillsboro was unable to help with High Ridge due to high tap in fees. LMH – Tucker looked at some of these red lines and said he has lines within a few hundred feet of these lines. Doug Baer said some of those lines were a mistake. He is unsure if they would want to go all the way over to the state line. He thinks VRUC needs to be looked at because of the condition of their lines. No one wants to take it in unless it gets fixed.

Thompson said that SDRSD wanted to buy VRUC with a 15 year plan to fix the lines.

Jacobson concurred and said they, VRUC, would rather maintain control and spend a lot of money on lawyers.

Art Wenzel continued- this map has taken the real providers and expanded their areas to take care of the real providers. He thinks DCRSD should be negotiating the deals and get money to solve the problems.

Thompson – went on about the politics of all this.

Wenzel concluded with saying that on WLW this morning- changing this map should be done just like porcupines mate- very carefully and only when necessary. Also most experts are not and be careful who we listen to.

Renihan said- the vast majority of these areas are in low income areas. These people should not live in complete filth when we have riverboat revenue to solve this. All these guys sat on problems for 40 years and now they want all these areas. Some are running areas only where they can profit and not the low income.

Thompson- noted St Leon’s problem with forced hook-ups and high costs due to long lines. Tried to work with Council to pay back debt service to a fund to help solve ongoing problems. Condemning property is abominable because the county allowed these subdivisions to be built. If the gambling boat goes away the county and cities will be in trouble.

Rodney Dennerline- talked about the overflow issues as well and that every sewer district has had issues with this. He cited several incidents with each provider. Our effluent doesn’t have to stay in the county- our trash doesn’t. We need to be able to use what is close by and available to you. Seems like we were picking on farm animals and soil and water does a good job of educating farmers about this. The reason the sewer district was formed in 2002- was because people were coming into the health dept and asking for help to get their problems fixed. He outlined how Dillsboro and Aurora couldn’t fix High Ridge. The $4million line cost more than it would be to condemn the homes.

Jacobson- with the update of the 208 water plan- you want to get things done. The effluent standards have been raised. The problems aren’t any worse than they were before. The standards have been raised. When is the gov’t going to fund some of these things? The OKI Plan was paid for with federal ARRA dollars via IDEM.

Chris Mueller- Planning issues for providers – they need to know where they might be called upon to serve so they can plan costs and infrastructure. Payments have worked in L-bg township by charging a different rate for services outside their municipality.

Renihan- wants to be sure that DCRSD has a place at the table- and agrees that planning for these providers is important. They want to do interlocal agreements and be sure the county citizens have representation and are not forced to hook-up and get reasonable terms. No one wants to have more treatment plants- they would rather use existing services.

Fehrman- we are not an impediment- we are a facilitator. We need to uphold IDEMs efforts. We need to work with OKI to get clean water and not pollute downstream.

Jacobson asked how federal money gets to us to help with these new standards.

Travis Miller- This plan reports the facts about what is available and what the problems are. This plan is to help understand what the standards are. He thinks having this plan in place will have it ready if money becomes available to fund these improvements. This is like the shelf ready plans for highway plans.

Renihan will have a written response by April 1st to OKI on the 2nd amendment of the plan. .

Meeting adjourned at 6:35 PM

Christine Brauer Mueller
Lawrenceburg Township

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The best issue completed by the DCSD is flowing the sewage from the Dearborn County's TIF district down hill to the Harrison sewer district. 90% of their projects have put an economic burden on the citizens they were SELECTED to serve. The citizens of Dearborn County don't need DCSD overseeing and overriding the existing sewer districts of Dearborn County.
Keep the DCSD small and pointed toward the problem sewage polution areas in Dearborn County with no additional area or power.