Chesterton Tribune



Chesterton Utility Board hears reports on rainy May

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Just another rainy May in Duneland.

Last month fully 7.2 inches of rain deluged Duneland, as Chesterton Utility Superintendent Dave Ryan reported at Monday night’s meeting of the Utility Service Board.

That’s a lot--given that Chesterton’s average rainfall in May is 3.85 inches, according to the Weather Channel--yet still nearly an inch less of rain than fell in May 2019, according to the Chesterton Tribune’s own records: 8.12.

In any case, the 1.2-million gallon storage basin used to hold excess flow during heavy rain events worked, once again, like a champ, Ryan said, taking in some 750,000 gallons over the course of two particularly savage rains and saving the Utility from the need to overflow wastewater into the Little Calumet River.

“Every time we get a really big rain, it makes us look like we did a really smart thing, building that basin,” Member Andy Michel remarked. “It was money well spent.”

Connection Agreement Extended

In other business, members voted unanimously to extend by one year an out-of-town connection agreement with Marcus Key, who has purchased the property at the southwest corner of Meridian Road and C.R. 1050N.

That agreement was set to expire in August, but as Key told the Service Board he’s had some difficulty in lining up a builder.

Super’s Report

Ryan updated members on a couple of items:

-- The replacement of the Barrington Bridge Apartment lift station has been completed and the Utility is in the process of testing its SCADA functionality.

-- Although the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission has not yet billed the Utility for its intervention in the Valparaiso City Utilities cause, it did bill Valpo a total of $7,033.78, in IURC charges, Indiana Office of Utility Consumer Counselor charges, and legal advertising charges. So it’s likely Chesterton’s own bill will be in that neighborhood, Ryan said.

-- The Indiana Department of Environmental Management has approved the Sanitary Sewer Master Plan previously endorsed by the Service Board as part of the settlement of its territorial dispute with Valparaiso City Utilities. That plan, in the form of an ordinance, will now go to the Town Council for approval.

-- As of May 18 all town departments, including the Utility, resumed a normal work schedule. The billing office doors opened on June 8. Modifications were made to the glass work at the municipal complex to provide an increased level of protection for the clerks who work in the lobby.

May in Review

In May, Chesterton used 65.02 percent of its 3,668,000 gallon per day (gpd) allotment of the wastewater treatment plant; Porter, 67.19 percent of its 851,000 gpd allotment; the Indian Boundary Conservancy District, 74.54 percent of its 81,000 gpd allotment; and the plant as a whole, 64.11 percent of its capacity.

With 7.2 inches of total rainfall in May, there were no combined sewer overflows of wastewater into the Little Calumet River.

In May, the Utility ran a surplus of $262,793.34 and in the year-to-date is running a surplus of $459,424.49.

Godspeed and God Bless

President Larry Brandt took a moment at the end of the meeting to express, on behalf of the Service Board, members’ profoundest sympathy on the passing of Amy Christine McCord, 41, the wife of Scot McCord and the daughter-in-law of their colleague, Member Scott McCord. “It’s a tremendous loss, and we’re so sorry.”



Posted 6/17/2020




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