BCRSD Board Meeting, March 12

BCRSD (BCRSD)  – Brown County Regional Sewer District

Status? The BCRSD Board has been given assurance by the State that the Bean Blossom project will be given a high priority for approval and funding is available.  Information on approval of the application will be known in the June/July timeframe.   They offered a caveat that approval was not a certainty and would likely be dependent on validating the need and acquiring the needed easements.

The justification for the project:  The “age” of systems (they are using an “estimated average life” of 25 years.  This information was included in the letter to residents. They are also using the results from the Health Department’s review of records. This 25-year estimate is contradicted by the EPA and Presby Environmental.

  • Useful Life of a Presby System.   If the system is designed, installed and maintained properly, there is no limit to the life expectancy of Enviro-Septic® Technology. In the event that the System malfunctions due to abuse, AES or Enviro-Septic® may be rejuvenated in as little as 72 hours, eliminating the need for a replacement.
  • EPA Septic Systems (Onsite/Decentralized Systems): Conventional septic systems are designed to operate indefinitely if properly maintained.  However, because most household systems are not well maintained, the functioning life of septic systems is typically 20 years or less.”

Residents will be sent a questionnaire along with a request for them to identify the location of their system. At an audience members request, residents to will be provided with the opportunity to identify if they want or do not want sewers and the Board will total the responses and share with the public).  (Note that the RSD does not require resident approval).

Information Sheet. Bandy Russell is working with councilman Dave Redding on a general information fact sheet regarding septic systems and terminology. Information will also be added that will provide residents with cost benefit-related information.

Residents will also be asked to approve an easement.  No details were provided regarding compensation or eminent domain.  On the easements granted by homeowners affected by the Salt Creek Trail under threat of eminent domain, payments included $176,000 for .259 acres and the school recently received $161,000 for less than three acres.

An RSD can require hook-ups to sewers and can grant waivers. The state code was referenced regarding guidance on waivers.  Indiana Code Title 36. Local Government § 36-9-23-30.1

  • The process:  “The property owner, at the property owner’s expense, obtains a written determination from: (A) the local health department; (B) the local health department’s designee; (C) if subsection (f) applies, a qualified inspector;  or (D) if subsection (g) applies, the board of the local health department; that the septic tank soil absorption system or constructed wetland septic system is not failing.”
  • The first waiver is for 10 years followed by up to two 5 year extensions for a total of 20 years.

The RSD is working to acquire grants that can be used to develop a county-wide wastewater treatment strategy.

No firm dates yet on when to expect the results from any testing of water.

On the option of running a line to Helmsburg and limiting the area to be served to just Bean Blossom, the Project Engineer (Gary Ladd) stated that this was not a cost-effective option (not enough customers) that the State would approve. The option of expanding the Helmsburg plant to accommodate the 240 Bean Blossoms customers was not discussed.

BCRSD board member discussion regarding current and past efforts to work with Helmsburg have not been productive. There was conflicting and inaccurate information exchanged between the various representatives.

MISC.

  • Council members present Dave Critser, Dave Redding, Bill Hamilton, Darren Byrd. Commissioners present Diana Biddle and Jerry Pittman.  RDC President Jim Kemp. Republican Party Reps:  Mark and Robyn Bowman.
  • The audience was directed to limit their questions/statements to 3 minutes.   Appears that the new “word” to be associated with individuals with questions and concerns is “negative” ….  a step up from naysayer?   🙂
  • Several invoices were approved.  Government representatives acknowledged that obligating expenses (approving work) prior to budget approval is not a common practice.

Further information on the history of the project:

 

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