Fayette to consider new sewage treatment plant 12.19

Written by David Green.

Tim Harmsen of the Arcadis engineering firm is well aware of financial challenges ahead for Fayette to pay for planned upgrades to the sewer system. He believes some help is needed from a source that doesn’t yet exist.

“The only way you’re going to be able to pay for this plan is if you grow,” he told council members Thursday.

There’s a catch hiding in that statement.

“To grow, you need additional treatment capacity.”

The village sewer treatment system can’t handle more growth. If a new housing development or industry were proposed for Fayette, the treatment system wouldn’t be able to accept the additional waste.

Harmsen’s long term control plan for the village includes a seven-year break from sewer separation projects beginning 2010, during which time a new sewage treatment system would be constructed.

“By placing the treatment system early,” he said, “it allows the village to collect some capital and it will allow you to grow.”

He estimates the cost at $3.2 million. If the new plant allows industrial growth, new revenue from income taxes and water and sewer fees could help pay for the sewer separation project.

Arcadis considered other options for handling excess flow and decided a packaged treatment system makes the most financial sense. The system would allow continuous discharge of treated water.

The long term control plan that will be submitted to the Ohio EPA for approval doesn’t commit the village to installing a new treatment system nor to a specific type of plant.

Harmsen has some concerns about the Ohio EPA allowing the village to take a seven-year break from the separation project.

Village administrator Tom Spiess thinks the village should be given credit for the $1.5 million of sewer separation work done in the past.

Spiess said he intends to work on economic development issues after he leaves his administrator post at the end of this year.

“Our budget is built on jobs, not property taxes,” he said.

Industrial buildings are filled, Spiess said, but that hasn’t led to the replacement of jobs lost when Fayette Tubular Products closed in 1997.


  • Front.poles
    MOVING EAST—Utility workers continue their slow progress east along U.S. 20 south of Morenci. New electrical poles are put in place before wiring is moved into place.
  • Front.cowboy
    A PERFORMER named Biligbaatar, a member of the AnDa Union troupe from Inner Mongolia, dances at Stair District Library last week during a visit to the Midwest. The nine-member group blends a variety of traditions from Inner and Outer Mongolia. The music is described as drawing from “all the Mongol tribes that Genghis Khan unified.” The group considers itself music gatherers whose goal is to preserve traditional sounds of Mongolia. Biligbaatar grew up among traditional herders who live in yurts. Additional photos are on the back page of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.base Ball
    UMPIRE Thomas Henthorn tosses the bat between team captains Mikayla Price and Chuck Piskoti of Flint’s Lumber City Base Ball Club. Following the 1860 rules, after the bat was grabbed by the captains, captains’ hands advanced to the top of the bat—one hand on top of the other. The captain whose hand ended up on top decided who would bat first. Additional photos of Sunday’s game appear on page 12 of this week’s Observer. The contest was organized in conjunction with Stair District Library’s Hometown Teams exhibit that runs through Nov. 20.
  • Front.chat
    VALUE OF ATHLETICS—Morenci graduate John Bancroft (center) takes a turn at the microphone during a chat session at the opening of the Hometown Teams exhibit at Stair District Library. Clockwise to his left is John Dillon, Jed Hall, Jim Bauer, Joe Farquhar, George Hollstein, George Vereecke and Mike McDowell. Thomas Henthorn (at the podium) kicked off the conversation. Henthorn, a University of Michigan–Flint professor, will return to Morenci this Sunday to lead a game of vintage base ball at the school softball field.
  • Front.cross
    HUDSON RUNNER Jacob Morgan looks toward the top of the hill with dismay during the tough finish at Harrison Lake State Park. Fayette runner Jacob Garrow focuses on the summit, also, during the Eagle Invitational cross country run Saturday morning. Continuing rain and drizzle made the course even more challenging. Results of the race are in this week’s Observer.
  • Front.bear
    HOLDEN HUTCHISON gives a hug to a black bear cub—the product of a taxidermist’s skills—at the Michigan DNR’s Great Youth Jamboree. The event on Sunday marked the fourth year of the Jamboree. Additional photos are on page 12.
  • Front.hose Testing
    HOSE safety—The FireCatt hose testing company from Troy put Morenci Fire Department hose to the test Monday morning when Mill Street was closed to traffic. The company also checks nozzles and ladders for wear in an effort to keep fire fighters safe while on calls.

Weekly newspaper serving SE Michigan and NW Ohio - State Line Observer ©2006-2016