By LINDSAY CAREY
Town Manager Gary Brumback introduced a bond ordinance for a $960,000 Water Pollution Control Facility upgrade at the Town Council meeting on Monday, March 23. Brumback said this ordinance represented the design of the upgrade, which will take about a year to complete.
He also said that the town could receive a 30 to 50 percent reimbursement grant from the state. Although the bond ordinance process was begging, Brumback explained that the time frame for it to go to referendum would be closer to 2016.
“We’ve begun the process,” said the town manager. “We will begin on the first of June, assuming that this is approved, in the design.”
Brumback said the estimate for referendum would be created not later than May 1, 2016, and would go out on November 8, 2016. The next step would be to authorize the final design, and the bidding phase would be in starting Nov. 15, 2017. Construction wouldn’t begin until April 2, 2018.
“This is the required timeline in order for us to be considered for the maximum amount of grants available through DEEP,” said Brumback.
Town Councilor Dawn Miceli expressed some concerns about the four to five year time frame of the project and the potential for advancements in engineering and technology.
“The biggest thing for me is future state mandates,” said Miceli. “I worry that we’ve already dealt nitrates and phosphorous. What are we going to be dealing with other chemical processes or toxins or what have you?”
Miceli said she was hoping for some additional guidance and information from the state about if mandates will change and suggested that state legislators were kept in the loop about the project.
“We’ve got tremendous support from our state legislators, our whole delegation has supported us throughout this entire process,” said Brumback and assured that they would continue to participate in the process.
However, he said in the past the town hasn’t received notice in advanced of future regulations from the state.
“We know something’s next,” he said. “We just don’t know what it is, when, nor do we know the impact.”
However, he said that the town’s partnership with Tighe and Bond, an organization that is “staying ahead” in the realm of technology, would help them in being able to foresee future regulations and adapt accordingly.
“They’ve already modified several things because the technology is changing fairly rapidly,” Brumback said about Tighe and Bond.
The town manager also assured Miceli that the town has been and will continue to be in contact with both state and federal agencies throughout the facility upgrade project.
The council voted to schedule the public hearing for the water pollution control facility upgrade on April 13 at 7 p.m.