CROMWELL — After tabling the discussion of additional sewers around Eastshore and Northshore drives last month, Turkey Creek Regional Sewer District has focused its energy on reversing flow from the town of Syracuse. Just last week, the board signed off on $4.1 million in bonds to update current facilities in order to allow the additional flow.
When the project is complete, targeted for early 2019, the TCRSD will be totally disconnected from the town of Syracuse.
District Superintendent Timothy Woodward has continued to add smaller-scale updates to the district including preventative maintenance on air intake valves, replacing 80 feet of fallen gutters, and assisting the county highway department in digging up an entire street of manholes that were covered by up to 4 feet of asphalt.
Woodward has also been working closely with Jeff Hersha, engineer for Jones and Henry, to develop a construction schedule with the two main contractors for the reversal project. NIBLOCK has begun offloading pipe to begin work while the ground is still pliable, but talk of pushing off concrete may be a detail finalized in the submitted schedules. These details are expected to be finalized in early December.
As the discussion turned to notifying the town of Syracuse of this complete disconnect, board president Rex Heil spoke up to suggest Syracuse be held accountable to its nearly three years of overbilling and subsequent fees to acquire a third-party rate consultant. Heil proposed the letter notify the town of a formal disconnect date no later than December 2019, as well as an invoice in the amount of approximately $101,000; $58,000 in overpayment and $43,000 in consultant expenses. The board agreed heartily.
Heil explained to public members in comparison to previous years, bills from the town of Syracuse had increased up to 400 percent in some cases. After a year of these bills, the district brought in Jon Julian, Umbaugh and Associates, to get to the bottom of it. Shortly after, noted Heil, Syracuse hired its own third-party rate consultant who has provided no info or response to inquiries from TCRSD. Since Julian made an official determination on a realistic rate, the board has only paid a portion of each monthly invoice to the yown of Syracuse.
Andrew Grossnickle, attorney for the district, indicated the town of Syracuse and TCRSD have a common goal of disconnection. The board plans to proceed with both the formal letter and the official invoice.
The district will meet again Monday evening, Dec. 17, at the Cromwell office. Questions for the board should be sent to [email protected]