Chesterton Tribune



Despite 8-plus inches of rain in May, Utility never forced to bypass

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The bad news: 8.12 inches of rain were recorded in May at the Chesterton wastewater treatment plant, with fully 24 days out of the month’s 31 receiving at least .01 inches or more.

The good news: despite the deluge, the Utility was never forced to bypass wastewater into the Little Calumet River, Superintendent Dave Ryan reported to the Utility Service Board at its meeting Monday night.

Chalk that success up to the 1.2-million gallon storage basin installed as part of the Utility’s long term control plan to reduce combined sewer overflows during heavy rain events. The basin was pressed into service twice in May, and at one point was filled up to a height of 15 feet, or just shy of 1 million gallons, Ryan said.

On the other hand, the average daily flow at the plant in May was 3.98 million gallons, compared to 2.97 million in April (which received 5.97 inches of rain ); and to only 2.36 million gallons in January (which received 1.16 inches).

Total gallons treated last month: 123 million, compared to 89 million in April and 73 million in January.

In May, Chesterton used fully 88.19 percent of its 3,688,000 gallon per day (gpd) allotment of the plant; Porter, 75.7 percent of its 851,000 gpd allotment; the Indian Boundary Conservancy District, 125.83 percent of its allotment; and the plant as a whole, 86.54 percent of its capacity.

“Time for some dry weather,” Ryan suggested.

“Over eight inches of rain and no bypasses,” Member Andy Michel remarked. “I think that’s terrific.”

Re: Old Montessori, New Early Childhood Learning

In other business, members voted unanimously to authorize the transfer of a sanitary sewer agreement inked 19 years ago with the Chesterton Montessori School--located at 270 E. Burdick Road in unincorporated Westchester Township--to the Duneland YMCA, which is purchasing the facility for its Early Childhood Learning Center.

Under the original document, the Utility agreed to provide sanitary sewer service to the Montessori School, after a line was run approximately half a mile east from the back end of the Estates of Sand Creek. That document also permits the transfer of the agreement--pending review by the Utility Service Board--to any new owner of the property, as the YMCA’s attorney, Greg Babcock, noted.

Ryan advised the board that there would be no issues with capacity and that the YMCA “will be a good fit with their Early Learning Center.”

New Camera Truck

Meanwhile, Ryan reported that the Utility took delivery of its new camera truck on May 20. “All is working well,” he said. “It’s been in heavy use since we got it. It’s a great piece of equipment and we thank you for investing in it.”

The Utility purchased the camera truck from Eco Infrastructure Solutions Inc. of Whitestown, Ind., at a cost of $190,943.60, to replace the old one, which had become mechanically unsound and unreliable.

The Collections Crew uses the camera truck to televise sewer lines, allowing the Utility to identify emerging problems or quickly to isolate sudden failures.

New Pickup

Members voted unanimously to authorize Ryan to purchase a new Ford F-250 pickup truck at a cost of $35,000--which includes a $12,000 government discount--to replace an 18-year-old model which has essentially been mothballed, inasmuch as its floorboard has rotted out.

Ryan said that crew members have been doubling and tripling up in a second pickup to get around town.

Members did tell Ryan to pay cash on the barrel for the new truck.

May in Review

In May the Utility ran a surplus of $339,341.69 and in the year-to-date is running a surplus of $684,870.51



Posted 6/18/2019




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