Village of Colfax
Water & Sewer Committee
Thursday, November 19, 2020
1. People in attendance: Chuck Morefield and Jason Wagoner, Committee Members; Josh Hereford, Superintendent of Maintenance; Larry Dodds, Mayor. Carol Stephenson was unable to attend.
2. The Limited Water Infrastructure Assessment Report from Farnsworth Group, presented at the November 9, 2020 meeting, was discussed. The suggestion was made to focus on filter medium radium sampling and the proposed work in 2021 with the inspection of Well #3 but the entire report was part of the discussion.
In further discussion with Zach Knight, there was additional information obtained related to various projects proposed for 2020-2021.
A. Once inspected and performing the necessary maintenance, this will be sufficient for the well for 5-7 years. Scheduling well inspection and maintenance every 2-4 years once all have inspected will put the Village on a regular schedule and distributes the cost over time.
B. The radium test is solely done to determine if the media must be sent to a special landfill, which is more costly. Josh determined he could complete the test at about one-fourth the cost stated in the report.
C. The sampling of the medium for radium levels must be completed within a 12-month period in which the maintenance project for the dualator and media replacement is completed in order to be valid. Since this project will take 4-6 weeks to complete, the best time to do it is when the lowest water use occurs, such as January thru March. Prices may be better during that period since companies may be looking for work. Once the project is completed, it should last 5-10 years.
D. The dualator and media removal and replacement are probably the highest priority of the assessment report. The current media has exceeded its life and by replacing it, it can be better determined if this improves the quality and color of the water or if additional investigation is needed.
E. The internal and external inspection of the elevated tower is recommended for 2021 so it can be determined if the full rehabilitation, scheduled for 2027, could be pushed beyond the recommended date in the report. Generally, elevated tank full coating rehabilitation, a costly project, is done every 20 years.
F. It was indicated that the current procedures for safety with our chlorination system are sufficient. It was noted that failure of the fan that automatically comes on with the opening of the door is vital and the fan must be replaced immediately if it stops functioning. Such a replacement would be $200-$300.
3. Information was presented on how the proposed projects could be financially possible. The Village could levy a debt certificate for $210,000 to cover the proposed cost of the proposed activity for 2020 and 2021. The annual cost of the levy amount could be covered by the money that has and will be accumulated in the water savings account since the rate increased on January 1, 2020. The issuance of the debt certificate would basically extend a current debt certificate issued in 2018 from 2028 to 2030. The rate of interest would be 2.500% on the $210,000. The annual payment for the new debt certificate would range from $16,000-$20,000. In essence, the annual increase in water rates would generate close to that amount. If so, the Village would abate, or not levy to generate the funds to repay the debt certificate.
4. It was pointed out that the new ordinances passed in 2020 (Ordinance No. 2020-01 and Ordinance No. 2020-02) to increase the water and sewer rates, effective January 1, 2020 needed to be revised to add in the built-in 2% increase for all the areas of water and sewer rates on January 1, 2021 and every January 1 thereafter. This was inadvertently omitted from the ordinances noted above. New Ordinances 2020-15 and 2020-16 will be on the December 7, 2020 agenda for approval and implementation on January 1, 2021.