By Chelsea Los
Although no great progress has been made for the addition of sewers around Lake Wawasee, the board did fill their evening with a series of smaller updates from Turkey Creek Regional Sewer District superintendent Timothy Woodward.
The public monthly meeting began promptly at 7 p.m. Monday, Sept. 21, and was held in the large garage bay of the district offices.
Ordinances And Resolutions
The district’s attorney, Andrew Boxberger of Carson Boxberger LLP, was present for the meeting and provided two updated documents for a motion to pass. The first was the updated use ordinance that was presented originally in July, but was forgotten during August’s voting. The second was a resolution essentially documenting the fact the preliminary engineering report was submitted to the state revolving fund prior to the district holding a hearing. This decision was made due to timeliness and additional “points” for the district pending those documents were submitted in May. Both documents were passed by the board after a motion and a second with no opposition.
Public Request Denied
Tim Yoder of Vawter Park was the only public member who spoke during Monday night’s meeting. Yoder presented a request the district waive fees for his incomplete hookup. Yoder explained he had originally intended for a secondary house on the property to be torn down but had changed his mind, delaying the process of sewer connection. Yoder did bring a letter with him from his contractor providing a confirmation he would be connecting, but the board asked Yoder return when the installation was complete and indicated they would most likely agree to waive those penalties to not connect fees once proof of connection was there.
Local District Doings
Woodward provided a lengthy summary to the board and members of the public on some of the smaller changes and updates the district has been working through during COVID quiet times and as far back as September 2019. About a year ago, the district began truly planning for the switch over from using the town of Syracuse to treat a small portion of their flow to being completely independent. At that time, Woodward stopped providing treatment to outside customers in an attempt to balance TCRSD systems for different levels of bacteria and higher flows.
He presented data from 2016 forward showing how good bacteria and bad bacteria work together to turn sewage into solids, and why maintaining a harmonious balance is key to the operation. Too much good bacteria can overproduce solids, leaving the district little leeway on sludge processing. Over the years, Woodward and his crew have been able to reduce the levels of solids coming out, even with the additional flow from Syracuse.
The district is also focusing on preventative maintenance and always planning ahead for peak flow times, typically the Fourth of July holiday. In this vein, Woodward has tackled updated generators, well maintenance, the addition of another clarifier tank, replaced valves, and updated pump sensors. Woodward noted flow levels have begun to slow for the first time since early July, placing blame on many local part-time residents not needing to go back to their full-time homes due to COVID-related reasons. He also laid out plans for the installation of “No Parking” signs on district right of ways, and ongoing projects to maintain clean running systems and lines.
The district will meet again 7 p.m. Monday, Oct. 19. The public is welcome and encouraged to attend.