NORTH WEBSTER — Lakeland Regional Sewer District Board of Trustees held a special meeting Monday, Dec. 19, at the North Webster Community Center to pass a motion authorizing members to sign off on approval of the Indiana Bond Bank payment and U.S. Department of Agriculture loan closing. By doing so before Jan. 1, the board avoided a full percentage point increase in interest payments predicted by the USDA in the first quarter of 2017.
According to Jim Haney, board president, members had spent the previous 10 days figuring out what they needed to do to “take advantage of our lower interest rate,” 2.237 percent.
The approval empowered Bob Marcuccilli, assistant secretary, to “take all actions necessary” along with Treasurer Mike Dewald and Haney, in the absence of Greg Mitchell, board secretary. The motion passed, as did the motion to approve the total loan amount of $20,089,000 and accept the grant in an amount not to exceed $8,629,000. The bond document will be held by bond counsel until the Dec. 27 closing.
DLZ engineer Casey Erwin also updated the board on the progress of construction, particularly work at the waste treatment plant.
According to Erwin, CenturyLink stopped short of connecting communications into the plant’s administration building. For Astbury Water Technology to monitor blower building controls and pump stations from the administration building, a contractor will have to connect exterior lines to the existing infrastructure, which will require additional costs yet to be figured.
“How can that be missed?” Haney asked. “We were assuming the utility would do that,” Erwin answered. Erwin expects to have the additional costs available at the January meeting.
The board also passed a motion authorizing the signing of the engineering service agreement, and fees of $30,000, pending the approval of the USDA, which must authorize any additional fees.
Two other motions passed by the board authorized 15 day extensions, one at the treatment plant to complete digital communications, and another to contract C, allowing natural gas hook-up and work on three pump stations. These changes do not effect cost or the final substantial completion date of Feb. 27, 2017.
The board also declined a property owner’s request for a change to their grinder station hook-up. Members agreed to accede to the request would be neither timely or fiscally responsible. “You can’t get more eleventh hour than this,” DeWald commented. Property owners will be expected to adhere to current engineering plans.