WATER POLLUTION CONTROL COMMISSION
September 21, 2016
Present: Jim Miller, Todd Eubanks, John Fisher, Amy Atamian & Rich Regan.
Also Present: Katherine Stauffer, Patricia Moisio, Eugene Burke & Matthew Bernardini of Veolia Water
Mr. Eubanks called the meeting to order at 7:32 pm in the Hearing Room of the Town Office Building
APPROVAL OF MINUTES of August 17, 2016
Katherine Stauffer pointed out the misspelling of her name on the 2nd page of the minutes, 3rd line down.
REVISED from “Staffer” to “Stauffer”.
Motion: move that the minutes of the August 17, 2016 meeting be accepted with the clarifications noted. A. Atamian, J. Miller. No discussion. Motion approved unanimously.
REPORT FROM VEOLIA WATER
The monthly written report was reviewed.
Discussion on the following delivered by E. Burke and M. Bernardini:
- Continuing weekly power washings of primary drum screeners continue.
- Drum Screen: The drum screen seems to be functioning properly with routine power washings but coming up with the issue of excess weight of 150 lbs. worth of skimming—finding lots of rags
- Have a rental forklift onsite to lift the heavy bags (rental is just for 30 days).
-Too much for two men to lift without the help of a lift….need to come up with a solution. Created proposal to purchase one.
-Currently have a dumpster onsite to put excess catch in but just a temporary fix.
-Replaced the permeating pump (weighs 460 lbs)—which forklift helped to lift….so didn’t need to use outside contractor. Also is a huge safety risk.
-Used to use a garbage can for catch but now use an ash hopper to a dumpster sized garbage container. Bags are made of heavy duty plastic—but are quite heavy. Dump two times a day.
Question by Eubanks: Is it typical to have a forklift/bobcat onsite? The answer is that a forklift would be sufficient. The biggest issue is the lift gate and having a drum fall or break open.
Discussion: Question from J. Miller about the screener and capture: Are people dumping more and what are you finding? Answer: Flows are actually down but seeing more capture…because screens are doing their job. The things they are seeing: white cloth rags, mop strings, wipes, hygiene products, odd items. Not that many gloves…a lot less.
J. Miller suggested that 1) a strong letter should be sent to customers explaining what is being found—a reprimand if you will—things that should and should not be disposed of. 2) And if we continue to get this high volume of debris, even with letter of reprimand, we should not purchase a new lift truck, but see if there is an older forklift in the Town of Redding (perhaps at the Transfer Station) that could be used or leased. Town normally leases equipment…should be discussed with BOS and/or finance director. Certified pre-owned is around $10,000. Hard to come by an outdoor unit but would like a propane/gas mix machine. Use the machine around just 20 minutes a day.
E. Burke noted that he will take photos of debris and share with commission. Then K. Stauffer will draft a letter and coordinate with photos and send to clients (email and direct mail). The commission will contact BOS and Finance Director best economic alternative to purchase a forklift and to consider OSHA safety standards as a supportive reason to purchase (back safety, etc.)
- New Influent Auto Sampler (old one was 12 years old, lifespan is actually 8-10 yrs.)
New one is online and fantastic.Cost: $4,812.30 (vs. $7,000 price tag). Substantial cost savings.
- Phosphorus (permit began Thurs. Sept. 1). E. Burke thanked M. Bernardini for taking lead on this, getting pump system ready. Spread sheet and numbers available. Permit requires that we do not go over 1.08 lbs. per day from April 1-Oct. 31 (a rolling sample—all samples added and averaged). Veolia is doing a daily test. Poly Aluminum Chloride (PAC) was delivered Sept. 3rd. Tests done on Tues and Thurs. 1st day: .6 lbs per day, 2nd day, .25 lbs. Pump does not have to run to capacity. That’s good. Flow is ¼ of permit allowance.
Discussion: The goal is to USE LESS PAC and take baby steps. You don’t want residual PAC accumulating. You don’t want to add too much or too little. As numbers change, the PAC is adjusted. Once contracted lab results come in, PAC will be adjusted if need be As far as membranes are concerned, they are not an issue.
The total phosphorus count: sent to lab once (1) per week. Veolia would be happy to send data to commission. Doing an in-house internal test every day…24 hour composite sample (ex: .6 lbs per day). The unit for Poly Aluminum Analyzer was not purchased…doing it manually. Matt and Eugene are always watching what’s going on in the plant. Would like an analyzer down the road so they can make adjustments from home.
PAC works by creating a “blanket” in the plant, “saturating” the influent. Creates an even “aeration”…without a lot of oxygen. Want to keep it at 11,000… the “wasting” is better than expected…an overflow over the member…pulling things out (solids, phosphorus) … to create around 30% waste sludge. The numbers are very encouraging.
Another issue: there was a pump/membrane failure…but it is fixed. And is 20% more energy efficient. Original price of pump was $3,630. The old one was 460 lbs. and is not re-buildable. Another one may have to be purchased in the future. Recommend put another one on the shelf as a critical spare.
Rebate from Eversource: for the Dryer. Saving some energy.
Another thing about PAC: What is the effect on membranes? Originally a rep from Lane, the membrane makers, will not degrade the membranes. Will not damage them. We just have to be careful not to over-dose…which would mean starting from scratch (stops aeration). Creates a black floating mass.
Back-up systems: on phone or online.
Spare Membranes: Email and proposal. Original quote was $400,000. New unit is $255,000 for one basin/rack. Cost of stainless steel is expensive. In stock in Arizona…custom fabricated…and sent. If one cassette fails, if there are 4, can we purchase broken cassette?
Discussion ensued: We could have spare cassettes that could be left in the open air, not in water.
There are 2 basins that are not the same size. Talked about G.E. units. Emails will be sent out to find out about cassette replacements. j. Miller made a comment about how G.E. sent a letter to First Selectman when the Town refused to buy their membranes because they did not fit the plant.
REVIEW OF USAGE/METER READINGS
K. Stauffer put tremendous effort in portfolio. Found out that Mulvaney Plumbing has no way to test meters. In order for Veolia to provide accuracy, not sure what to do other than replacing meters. Mostly questionable ones. What is price of meter?
K. Stauffer thinks we should move ahead. Many are original installations and are too old. Readings are the same, some change. Some that would need immediate replacement are found at 18 Main St., 25 and 27 Old Mill Rd.
Everyone applauded Katherine for her excellent work.
Veolia thinks that running them all year is unnecessary. The board questioned the time frame. Basically the lights kill bacteria from April 1-Oct. 31…why run them longer? Veolia is no longer required to test for fecal matter–test for e-coli. The lamps waste power. They run 365 days a year, run for 8,040 hours and then need to be changed. Its difficult and expensive maintaining them and cleaning them. Next meeting we should raise the question with Dave Pattee. A. Atamian asked if the effluent can be tested BEFORE it goes under the lights? Veolia will look into this, during the off-season. In addition, some Energy people came down to review light inspection. Wiring System had to be upgraded to keep these running. Can the bank of lights be reduced? Tubes, o-rings, rubber, disposal…it all adds up. But don’t want to violate any regulations. The VOD is under 4—which is a fantastic number. J. Miller noted that the Redding Garden Club was visited by Norwalk River Watershed representative, noting misinformation about VOD in our rivers…and he noted that he had to write an article condemning the misinformation about how our plant is run.
Matt noted that UV doesn’t kill E-coli, just deforms them so they can’t reproduce. He thinks the membranes hold it back.
65,000 gallons of waste sludge was removed from the plant site.
Veolia reps departed at 8:49 pm, wishing everyone a great night.
FINANCIAL STATUS AND ACTION OF INVOICES
Lumberyard is close to normal, Meadow Ridge is over. Shall Katherine send letter? Meadow Ridge is only two-thirds full at the moment. The Wire Mill is over. The Black Cat’s meter was broken but is now fixed. Allocation seems high….but it is busy…because of the season. J. Fisher asked about Washington Prime…noted it’s a bit pricey but have a robust happy hour. GT Saloon is closed but apartments above are still being rented. J. Fisher asked Katherine about new owners at 13 Woods Way. Rancho Alegre is grandfathered in.
Motion: Completed annual review of existing allocations vs. the actual meter. Decided to take no action on existing allocations. T. Eubanks, R. Regan. Approved. Unanimous.
DISCUSSION and ACTION on INVOICES AND FINANCIAL STATUS
K. Stauffer noted: Did not subtract payment from yearly reimbursables from last fiscal year: brings total of the invoices down to $36,298.11 (subtracted $3,503.59)…from $39,800 …for a balance of $52, 276.21.When is next billing? Oct. 1, 2016.
Meter readings done monthly from Aquarion, sent quarterly from Veolia: July, Oct., Jan., April.
Reviewed the list of what to pay.
Motion: Pay all invoices except Veolia monthly September (with clarification that July payment will be reviewed.) R. Regan, Eubanks. Approved. Unanimous.
COMMISSION MEMBER OR PUBLIC COMMENT
Introduction of Alice Smith (meeting minute taker) by P. Moisio. Kind words were spoken about Mary Maday. Her imparting of town historic knowledge was invaluable to the commission.
Request was made to have First Selectman Pemberton come in and address the commission about the Gilbert and Bennett court ruling.
Discussion about USDA visit at G&B site: J. Miller shared that an email was delivered and wanted to look at the waste treatment plant—there is a lien on it. Veolia was not aware that they were coming. They came unannounced but noted that the plant is working well.
The group asked where they learn more about the G&B court case. P. Moisio suggested to link to the docket at ct.gov (court system).
Motion: move to adjourn the meeting. Regan, Eubanks. Approved. Unanimous.
The meeting adjourned at 9:13 pm
Submitted by Alice Smith