2009-11-04 / Front Page

Water, Sewer Rates Going Up?

Archbold Village Council is looking at increasing the rates charged for water and sanitary sewer service by 2% and 3%, respectively.

Council discussed, but took no action, on the issue at the Monday night, Nov. 2 meeting.

“We’re looking at doing it soon after the first of the year, if the finance committee and council approve,” said Dennis Howell, Archbold village administrator.

The major renovation of the water treatment plant was completed 30 years ago. There are a number of areas that need attention, “as there are every year,” he said.

Needs

Village officials are asking the finance committee to appropriate money for the following areas:

•$50,000 for the replacement of valves and valve parts in the water intakes in the village reservoirs.

The valves date back to about 1955 and are becoming fragile; workers are afraid if they operate the valves, the valves will stick in the closed position.

•$25,000 for radio water meter-reading equipment, plus new water meters;

•$30,000 for a pilot study of an ion exchange treatment system to reduce trihalomethanes, a by-product of treating water with chlorine.

Howell said ion exchange may be a less expensive treatment method.

He said the federal Environmental Protection Agency has tightened regulations on trihalomethanes from 100 parts per billion to 80 ppb, without scientific proof of a health benefit.

•$27,000 for a new highservice pump. The current pump is 45 years old. A new pump would be 20% to 30% more efficient.

•$20,000 for the replacement of 30-year-old lime troughs in the plant.

The old units are rusting, and the need is becoming critical.

At the wastewater treatment plant, village officials are looking for a way to aerate a lagoon that was converted to hold excess storm runoff.

“That’s the only major thing, and we’re just starting to analyze that,” he said.

The last increase in water and sewer rates was in 2006, when rates went up 9% in reaction to the announced closure of the Con-Agra Foods plant.

The company rescinded its decision about a year later.

Village council had been following a policy of raising water and wastewater rates slightly each year.

After enacting the 9% hike, it was decided to freeze water and wastewater rates.

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