Follow Main Street Monroe: Facebook Google+ Twitter

 
Public Works Meeting Centered on Water Report Cost Analysis
Monday, October 24, 2011 10:50:19 AM - Monroe Ohio

City of Monroe
Public Works Committee
October 11, 2011

by Angela Wasson

The Public Works Committee met on October 11, 2011 at 5:45 pm in the Council Library
located at 233 South Main Street, Monroe, Ohio.


Present were: Steve Black, Council Member; Anna Hale, Vice Mayor; Bob Kelley, Council
Member; William J. Brock, City Manager/City Engineer; Daniel J. Arthur, Director of Public
Works; Angela S. Wasson, Assistant to the City Manager/Clerk of Council; Mark George of
URS; and Elizabeth Zureick of URS.

 "..the goal of this project is to evaluate the cost of the operation of the water plant compared to purchasing water."

Mr. George explained that the goal of this project is to evaluate the cost of the operation of the
water plant compared to purchasing water. Monroe has a contract with Butler County to provide
water, but is expensive. URS used the flow rates determined by Arcadis. Even after looking at
the population status and actual water use the flow rate projections still looked good.
Mr. Black asked if required repairs were considered. Mr. George responded that some of the
alternatives assume that some modest upgrades to the treatment plant will be made and some will
not. That will play into the decision of purchasing water. Out of the four pumps two of them
should be replaced soon due to the electrical. Ms. Zureick stated that if something goes wrong
they will be very expensive to get repaired.


Mr. Kelley noted that the service is adequate to supply some of the upgrades and asked if historic
sales were reviewed. Ms. Zureick advised that review of the projected number of households
were took place in 20 years.


Mr. George explained that there are three major areas where you need to invest money in the
plant. There is a batch of pumps in the middle that push it through and it was recommended that
two be replaced and the high service pump that take it to the elevator tanks in town. There are
four of those also and estimated two of those being replaced. The operators are doing a great job
extending the life of those pumps.


Mr. Black asked about the life of the pumps. Ms. Zureick estimated 15 to 20 years, but you can
extend them indefinitely by replacing parts, which is what they have been doing. Mr. George
advised that the most expensive upgrade is the electrical system and you cannot expand without
a new panel.


Mr. Black asked about bridging off. Ms. Zureick felt that if you put in a new pump you might
want to put in a new vfd at the same time. Mr. Black felt that if we need to replace it we should
really take a look at good look at things for future generations.


Mr. George advised the plant was rated for 1.6 million gallons per day. We looked at the filters
and they represent most of the filtration, so you don’t have that anymore. You have about 1.28
million gallons per day, which is a substantial reduction of what the plant can handle. The Ohio
EPA likes to see what the capacity is and it doesn’t have anything to do with water quality.
Ms. Zureick explained that under the Butler County contract you have to take .8 mgd which is
concerning as when you design things you design for a peak day which is 1.7 times the average
rate. Your contract only allows you 1 mgd, so technically you are limited and if you produce 1.8
at your treatment plant in 2012 you are over that peak day. Butler County isn’t going to enforce
that as they want to sell as much water as they can. By contract you are not going to have
enough capacity as early a 2013. The report shows the maximum day demand is 2.52 in 2012. If
you have 1.28 mgd as your peak at the plant and you are only allowed 1 mgd from Butler
County.


Mr. Arthur reported that Butler County is on a minimum take or pay so they have trouble
meeting their minimums. Mr. George noted the contract says it is not a guarantee. Butler
County had a lot of problems in their distribution system when they made the contract with you
but they have corrected those problems. They would be willing to sell you anything they could
especially at 3.06 or 3.08 per gallon.


Ms. Zureick explained they looked at this we looked at the reasonable period to analyze. When
you look at it all of the other providers don’t want to provide anything unless you take at least ½
an mgd from them. It looked like you would want to keep the plant open until 2016 so you
wouldn’t be in danger of paying for water that you weren’t going to use. You don’t want to get
in a position where you are paying for water you aren’t going to use. The other period is 2024,
which coincidentally if you kept the plant in service through 2024 it coincides with the end of the
Butler County contract. That was the amount you would have enough from your treatment plant
plus ½ mgd that you would have to take from Butler County that you would have enough to
make your while to see if there was someone else that could supply you. The other option was
keeping it in service to 2031.


Mr. George stated that they estimated if hypothetically all the improvements were made the
number was $808,000, but wouldn’t be all at once. It would be as needed and in a report like
this we always add a healthy contingency amount as we usually throw in 25 percent contingency.
The $808,000 has a cushion on it.
Mr. Kelley asked about the cost to build a plant big enough to service for 30 years. Mr. George
replied that they didn’t make that a big feature of their project. They looked at the Warren
County wellfield and just to extend the transmission main was $850,000 and the existing wells
may not be usable according to EPA because they are not isolated enough. You may add another
$400,000 or $500,000 to that for new wells.


Ms. Zureick reported that Monroe’s plant needs 300 feet around the wells, so if your wellfield
were to fail, which is remote, you would have to find another wellfield somewhere else.
Mr. Kelley asked about rebuilding without affecting the EPA. Ms. Zureick explained you could
replace the pumps without affecting EPA.


Mr. George referred to the labor costs and other costs of buying, operating, replacing, electric,
and salt and used that as an ongoing annual cost and combined with amortized capital cost. Ms.
Zureick explained that the employees estimated about ¼ of their time is at the plant, but they
work 13 hours overtime a week at the water plant, so I think the $134,000 is a good number we
came up for the annual water operating costs. The numbers they gave her were reasonable. On
the operating costs the figure that you can see the more you treat the lower the cost. Some of the
electrical costs are fixed and the rest are pretty much dependent on the amount of water that is
treated. The chemical costs are directly related to the amount of water that is treated. The risk
associated with continuing operating the plant is if you had a major failure you could only treat
.86 mgd peak because the filters limit the flow rate through the plant. One is the fact is that you
don’t have proper isolation so if you had a failure of the wells it may just pay you to find another
source for water. You have four well pumps right now and one of them is in the right-of-way for
State Route 63. When they widened the road they put some power lines over an existing well so
they can’t service it properly.


Mr. Arthur informed the Committee that he working with Duke on that. He was told they could
de-energize that when we work on it. Ms. Zureick pointed out that you still have decent extra
capacity, but it is vulnerability and the pumps are getting older. The major one is the wellfield
and the filter.

"...you are paying 3.06 per 1,000 gallons and that is close to double what the calculated per thousand gallon dollar rate at your own plant."


Mr. George advised they talked to three other suppliers. Butler County and, as stated early on in
the report, you are paying 3.06 per 1,000 gallons and that is close to double what the calculated
per thousand gallon dollar rate at your own plant. The plant is more cheaply operated than
buying from Butler County. The infrastructure from Butler County and the increase purchase
rate, if you needed more you wouldn’t need any more infrastructure. The status quo with Butler
County is stable. Greater Cincinnati Water Works would extend a line from Hamilton Road.
They take care of all of Mason’s water. From that point they would extend a line up Nickle to
the treatment plant. It would be connected to the transmission main and continue to your tanks.
They have a pump station at the Mason plant they may need to upgrade, but is included in what
they proposed. It is a 16 inch water main and gave an estimate of wholesale purchase rate of
1.54 to 1.94 per 1,000 gallons. The more you buy the better the rate. Warren County had a
better rate, but Greater Cincinnati Water Works is softened, well treated, granular activated
carbon filtrated so you wouldn’t even add chlorine in the water.


Mr. Kelley asked about selling the entire water system to Greater Cincinnati Water Works. Mr.
Arthur noted that Lebanon kept control of theirs and Mason did this.


Ms. Zureick advised that Greater Cincinnati Water Works uses Class 56 which is super ductal
line pipe. She did not know if they wait for things to break before they replace, but Class 56 in
1903 was pretty thick.


Ms. Zureick informed the Committee that Warren County was 1.20 per thousand gallons, but it is
a hardness of 300. Greater Cincinnati Water Works and Monroe’s plant is putting out 120 to
150, you are taking it down from 500 to 120.


Mr. George recommended talking to Butler County to increase the amount you are allowed to
buy and for that incremental amount. It is helpful to get a better rate and the fact that they know
there are competitive rates lower than theirs. Ms. Zureick noted they are paying for water they
are not using they should be willing to lower the rates.


The Public Works Committee meeting adjourned at 6:30 pm.

The Voice | Weather | Advertisers | Advertising Information | Lending Library | Monroe Church Directory

Archived Monroe News From: 1999 | 2000 | 2001 | 2002 | 2003 | 2004 | 2005 | 2006 | 2007 | 2008 | 2009 | 2010 | 2011 | 2012

Website Design © Xponex Web and Media Services | Contact | Terms of Use | Copyright ©2017 MainStreetMonroe.com