LEESBURG — Sewer issues were again the focus at the Leesburg town council meeting held Monday, May 13.
Dan Tenney of Tenney & Sons, Inc., Warsaw, gave a sewer update. According to Tenney, an alarm went off for a residence on East Van Buren Street. Tenney stated the stator had a broken lid and there was broken landscaping stone inside the pod on top of the pump.
At last month’s meeting, Council Vice-President Tom Moore asked council members if they were still willing to go through sewer bond refinancing, provided it can save the town money. When the other council members responded in the affirmative, Moore stated he would make a call to begin the process.
At Monday’s meeting, Moore said, “Some of you in the room are aware that this board has been contemplating refinancing the bond issue. Lo and behold, during that process, we learned they are asking for a rate survey which would no doubt result in a rate increase and it’s because our maintenance cost is too high.”
Moore said the only expenses that vary are parts and labor.
“It’s what people are doing to the system that is causing the escalation in parts and labor fees,” said Moore, who pointed out that the cost for parts in 2017 was $30,702, while the cost of parts in 2018 was $57,447. In 2017, labor fees were $5,002; in 2018, labor fees were $20,202.
“Some of that is aging because the system is now 10 years old,” said Moore, “and as it gets to be 20 years old, you’re going to see a little increase in motor failures and things of this nature, simply because of age.”
However, Moore added, it appears that a great percentage of this increase in parts and labor is due to abuse of the system.
“Rather than come to the citizens of Leesburg with a rate increase to satisfy the bonding people that would allow us to refinance the bond at a little lower rate, save the town a few hundred thousand dollars over the balance of the loan, we’d have to raise the sewer rate to do that,” said Moore. “I can’t, in good conscience, do that.”
“No, I won’t do that either,” said Council Member Doug Jones.
A motion was approved to purchase brochures or posters with information pertaining to what items cannot be flushed. Information will be sent out with billing statements, and brochures or posters will be put up around town.
“The next step is going to be fines,” Moore cautioned.
Street Commissioner Craig Charlton obtained two quotes for the sealing of streets in town.
“Basically everything north of Van Buren,” said Charlton.
As council members reviewed the quotes, they noticed a significant difference in footage, with one quote stating the area was 6,490 linear feet and the other listing it as 3,400 linear feet.
Charlton said neither company came in and physically measured the footage but rather used GPS and/or satellite pictures to come up with the measurements.
Charlton offered to measure the footage himself in order to obtain an accurate figure. Council members agreed to table the issue until next month in order to give Charlton time to do this.
Leesburg resident Terry England expressed concern about chickens in city limits. England stated his wife has a medical condition, and he is concerned about airborne particles related to chickens. According to the town ordinance, anyone with farm animals or fowl within 200 feet of any residence is in violation of the town ordinance. Charlton will address this issue.
- The Leesburg Memorial Day Parade will be held at 10:30 a.m. Monday, May 27, with line-up beginning at 10 a.m. Following the parade, a memorial service will be held at the cemetery.
- The Leesburg town garage sale will be held the weekend of June 7-8.
- Town clean-up will be held the weekend of June 21-22.
- The next regular meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. Monday, June 10.