Possible projects for the future were discussed at the recent Dunkirk Town Board meeting.
Highway Superintendent Richard Butts reported on the sewer district and answered questions on the cost of repairing a pump at Dunkirk Electric Motor Repair.
He said all of the individual pumps in the district are over 30 years old and will soon need repairs or replacing at around $2,600 each.
OBSERVER Photo by Nicole Gugino
The Dunkirk Town Board discussed possible water and sewer projects at a recent meeting. Pictured are Town Clerk Jean Crane (right), Supervisor Richard Purol and Town Attorney Jeffrey Passafaro.
"You have to remember all these homeowners' pumps are over 30 years old. We are going to start to have a lot of problems with them," Butts said.
He said other municipalities with the individual pumps turn them over to the homeowner after they are installed.
"Other municipalities that have the pumps at the houses, the village buys the pumps and puts them in. Once they put them in, since the residents are paying for the electric, they turn them over to the homeowner and they are their responsibility from that point on," Butts explained.
However, Supervisor Richard Purol said that would not work in the town.
"It is just like the aeration systems that they did years ago where the pump runs on so long and off so long. What they found out, when you leave it up to the homeowner, they will unplug it ... because it is very expensive to power it," he said.
Butts said the town of Dunkirk is the only municipality in the north end of the county that uses the individual pump system. He said it may be a better idea to look into running a sewer line instead of paying each time a pump breaks.
"The solution to the whole thing is to do gravity down the hill to one lift station and pump back to Route 5. Then they could turn around and get rid of all the pumps there but it is going to be a lot of money to do that," he added.
Purol said there aren't grants for sewer projects like there are for water projects and this solution would need engineering and may not be able to be done in-house. He added at least the town can still get parts to repair the pumps for now.
During his report, Purol mentioned an idea he and the town of Portland Supervisor had been discussing for a shared water line between Portland, Pomfret and Dunkirk (PPD), like the sewer line is shared.
"Maybe there is a possibility of running a new line from Brigham Road like we talked about before all the way down to Willow Road up Route 5. We need to replace the line on Route 5; we have had three leaks already this year and there is no telling what is going to happen after the city completes what they are going to do there next spring," he explained. "We have a PPD sewer, why not have a PPD water."
He said he hoped by the three towns working together, they may be able to get a grant.
He added although Chadwick Bay Regional Development Corporation has good plans for a shared water system, it will not happen overnight.
"There is an awful lot of people who need the water although Chadwick Bay has the right idea of doing a regional thing with a large main, it is not going to happen overnight," he said.
Butts also said he would like to buy a roller for the highway department instead of sharing the Town of Sheridan's because it will cut down on work times. He said he found a 2,500-pound roller with less than 100 hours on it for $3,000.
The board said according to its updated procurement release, Butts will need at least one other quote before the board can approve the purchase.
Purol said there is money in the highway budget for the roller, if it is decided to purchase one. He added if Butts could get the information by the workshop and special meeting of the town board Oct. 2, the board could act on the purchase.
Town Clerk Jean Crane will also present the tentative budget to the board at the special meeting Oct. 2 at 7 p.m. The next regular meeting of the town board will be held Oct. 16 with a public hearing on overriding the tax cap at 6:45 p.m.
In other business:
The board decided to switch internet and phone service to DFT because other companies would not run an internet line to the highway department. According to Crane, the change will save the town about $50 a month.
The highway department purchased a new brine tank for the snowplow and has been doing maintenance in preparation for winter.
Purol said because the town does not have the necessary equipment, it will have to contract with the city of Dunkirk for chlorine testing when the health department has the towns of Dunkirk, Portland and Pomfret do chlorine level checks for two weeks.
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