Despite what was reported in the minutes of the Monday, Jan. 21 meeting of the Fulton County Commissioners, there are no plans to build a new $60 million water treatment plant for Archbold and Wauseon.
Jim Wyse, Archbold mayor, brought up the issue during his Monday, Jan. 28, State of the Village address, saying Archbold has no interest in participating in the construction of such a plant.
The minutes of the commissioners meeting details a discussion of a proposed regional water district for Fulton County.
The commissioners are looking at a countywide “regional” system after Lucas County and the City of Toledo began a study of their own system.
Fulton County obtains water from the City of Toledo, primarily for the North Star Steel plant at Delta. Wyse noted the contract between Toledo and Fulton County is due to expire within the next two years.
If Lucas County goes with a regional system, it could drive up the cost of water supplied to Fulton County.
During the discussion, the minutes of the meeting report that Ziad Musallam, director of Fulton County Public Utilities, said, “To construct a water treatment plant for Wauseon and Archbold, the cost is estimated between 60-70 million dollars.”
Attending the State of the Village address was Perry Rupp, Fulton County commissioner, who said the $60- $70 million figure was a misconception.
“That might have been the cost for the overall project,” Rupp said.
Part of the regional water district discussion included obtaining raw water from the Maumee River at Napoleon.
Napoleon needs to repair or replace its current water treatment plant. One proposal called for Archbold and Wauseon to obtain raw water from Napoleon, then pipe treated water back to that city.
Wyse said Napoleon was going forward with its own treatment plant project, but county officials are still including Napoleon in their discussion of a regional water system.
Wyse said Archbold has constantly maintained its water treatment plant.
He said four filters in the water plant were replaced at a cost of $175,000, and a system to treat water with liquid carbon dioxide is being added for $110,000.
Wyse said the big water plant project for 2013 is the addition of a new treatment system called “ion exchange.” The cost is estimated at $2 million.
He said the new process is required because the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency changed the rules for trihalomethanes, or TTH, a group of chemical compounds that are byproducts from disinfecting water with chlorine.
OEPA had allowed 100 parts of TTH per one billion parts water. The new rule changes that to 80 parts per billion. Wyse said it is the equivalent of six tablespoons per 200 million gallons.
Wyse said village officials are confident that the new treatment system will meet OEPA requirements for TTH.
Wyse also said village offi cials are debating the purchase of a new emergency generator for the water plant.
The choices are units that use diesel fuel or natural gas.
The diesel generator is cheaper, but if the power is out for several days, will the village be able to get diesel fuel from distributors?
A Scary Project
Wyse mentioned one additional water-related project.
He said it is recommended, but not required, that a community have a 180-day supply of raw water available in reservoirs.
Currently, Archbold’s two reservoirs hold enough for about 150 days.
The village owns lands for a third reservoir north of East Lutz Road and west of Co. Rd. 22. The estimated cost to build a reservoir there is $20 million.
The cost, he said, “is scary. We don’t even like to talk about it.”