Village seeking outside funding for sewer plant repairs/upgrades

The village is seeking outside funding sources to pay for widespread repairs to its aging sewer plant which is in need of upgrades to keep functioning for future.

Trustee Eunice Marshall told the Village Board Tuesday Night (Oct. 18) that she met earlier this month with DPW staff and representatives from Delaware Engineering to discuss what options are available in the form of grants or state funding for the work.

“Several things need to be addressed and it’s going to cost a considerable amount of money,” Marshall said. “Keep in mind that a lot of our equipment there is 30 years old or more.”

Among the needed upgrades are the replacement of outdated or poorly functioning parts and tanks, addressing various electrical and safety issues, and building a new shelter to protect equipment, she said.

Engineers told her that financing is available through the State and Municipal Facilities Program for Capital Projects, a state initiative that sets aside funds at the discretion of local state legislators through member item requests from cities, towns and villages each state budget session. Since Tuesday’s meeting, Mayor Rick Nelson has invited Stillwater state Assemblywoman Carrie Woerner to tour the plant and get a firsthand view of what the village is facing.

Delaware Engineering has also recommended that the village inventory all of its sewer plant assets from “pumps to parts” and prepare a master inventory list “to give us an idea of what expenses we might incur going forward,” Marshall said, “and to help us budget better.”

In other business October 18:

  • Trustees held a public hearing, then passed four local laws and a new Storm Water Management Plan for the village relating to storm water prevention, planning, management and control as required by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC). Once regulated by DEC, municipalities are now required to do their own storm water management as it pertains to new commercial and residential construction and site development within their borders. Each municipality is now required to submit an annual report to DEC to prove they are in compliance. Back in June, the Village Board approved the hiring of Stormwater Management Officer Lindsay Zepko (who also works for the town) to help the village draft its Stormwater Management Plan as required by state and federal law.
  • Trustees agreed to form a committee to develop a plan for replacing hundreds of water meters in the village that have still not been upgraded when new models were first introduced in 2008. At that time, residents were given notice to replace their devices with meters that can be read electronically from the road without the necessity of entering the house. The cost of a new meter is about $300. Mayor Nelson said that eight years later, about 300 residents have not yet complied and it routinely causes problems with the quarterly water billings. Nelson will head the committee with the assistance of Trustee Marshall and DPW Foreman Matt Rifenburgh to determine the procedure, schedule and pricing structure to finally bring all residents into compliance.
  • Trustee Judith Wood Shaw reported that she has requested a $2,000 grant from the Saratoga County Board of Supervisors to start up a program to make sunshine baskets for Stillwater senior citizens who may be ill or returning home from the hospital. The baskets would be assembled and delivered by guests who attend the monthly Senior Time program sponsored by the village and town.