UTILITIES COMMISSION MEETING
MAY 1, 2023
Mayor Foster called the meeting to order at 6:00 pm. In attendance were Councilmembers Tim O’Brien, Tom Herz, and Jose Medrano, W. S. Ingersoll (Town Manager) and Lynda Thomas, (Town Clerk) guests.
Mayor Foster asked if there were any additions or corrections to the minutes of the Utilities Commission meeting of April 3, 2023. Councilman Herz made a motion to approve the minutes of the Utilities Commission meeting of April 3, 2023, as presented. The motion was seconded by Councilwoman Efland and passed unanimously.
Mayor Foster stated that the operating funds on hand were $2,525,067.44. He asked for a motion to pay the bills. Councilwoman Efland made a motion to pay the bills. The motion was seconded by Councilman Herz and passed unanimously.
Mayor Foster called on Mr. Bob Sipes for his Utilities Commission report.
Mr. Sipes reported that two (2) PLC’s (program logic controller that operates the Biolac system and operates the air systems and chemical feeds) at the wastewater treatment plant have a hardware failure causing the units to not communicate. Each PLC operates a different portion of the plant. The Allen Bradley unit is a Biolac system, and the quantum PLC operates the chemical feeds, the pump, the waste system, the sludge return, etc. He stated that it would cost $55,000 to replace both units which includes the labor to install and program. Lywood is the only service that can replace and program both PLC’s. The new PLC’s should last 20 years.
Councilman Herz made a motion to purchase two (2) new PLC’s for $55,000. The motion was seconded by Councilwoman Efland and passed unanimously.
Mr. Sipes reported that the clarifiers gear-drive is leaking and needs to be replaced. He stated that he has ordered the part at $10,000 and it has arrived and is ready to be installed.
Mr. Sipes reported that one of the Pumps on Flat Land Road has gone bad and that it would cost more to fix it than it is to buy a new one at $21,300.
Councilman O’Brien made a motion to approve the purchase of a new pump at $21,300. The motion was seconded by Councilman Medrano and passed unanimously.
Mr. Sipes asked if he should start the process of ordering the jetter vacuum trailer that would support the 4-inch sewer laterals. The current jetter is for 6-inch sewer laterals and the new laterals cannot support the 6-inch jetter. The price of the new jetter cost between $95,000 to $100,000.
Mr. Herz stated that a motion should wait until the passage of Ordinance 01-2023.
Mr. Sipes reported that $20,000 was spent on two (2) cut-in valves to fix a leak and replace the hydrant on Prospect Street and Lynchburg Street.
Mr. Sipes reported that the $98,000 estimate from Keystone for the engineering contract for the Richard Drive building/plant is for both the construction oversight and bidding process.
Councilman Herz made a motion to approve the change order to the engineering contract for the new Richard Drive building out of the capital funds set aside to provide construction inspection and handle the bidding process. The motion was seconded by Councilman O’Brien and passed unanimously.
Mr. Sipes reported that he had two (2) mechanics look at the blow motor in his town truck and both reported it needs a new engine. The options are to put in a new motor and sell it at blue book value of $16,000 or try to sell it as is at $9000.
Councilman O’Brien made a motion to authorize to replace the motor on the current vehicle. The motion was seconded by Councilman Medrano and passed unanimously.
Mr. O’Brien introduced Ordinance 01-2023 amending Chapter 164: Waters and Sewers. This would change the language and elaborate on the conditions that must exist in order for the Commission to assume the repair or replace for private service lines.
Mr. Sipes stated that currently, when the Town fixes a lateral, it is the homeowner’s responsibility from the main to the house and the cost is not to exceed $1500. The price of the materials being used cost more than $1500. A roll of copper alone is $1800. For the Town to keep water and sewer rate down, the price to fix line issues will need to cover the cost of the materials used.
Mr. Sipes noted that the Town offers a payment plan for the homeowners so that when Ordinance 01-2023 goes into effect, they will not have to come up with the cost all at once.
Mr. Sipes asked if he could order the laterals and the jetter before Ordinance 01-2023 goes into effect. Once the ordinance goes into effect, he will be getting calls and will not have the materials or equipment to make the repairs.
Ms. Efland asked if the effective date could be adjusted to reflect the delivery date of the materials and equipment. There was a consensus to change the effective date.
Mr. Sipes said that was all he had to report. Mayor Foster asked if there were any other questions for Mr. Sipes. There being no further business, Councilwoman Efland motioned to adjourn the meeting at 6:47 p.m. The motion was seconded by Councilman Herz and passed unanimously.
Submitted by: Approved by:
Lynda Thomas, Town Clerk David Foster, Mayor