By Lasca Randels
LEESBURG — The town of Leesburg continues to be plagued by sewer problems.
Additional issues were reported at the town council meeting Monday, Sept. 12, when Derek Tenney of Tenney & Sons, Warsaw, provided his monthly sanitary sewer update.
Tenney informed the council of a situation that occurred at the lift station over Labor Day weekend.
“We lost power from Nipsco on one leg and that caused the lift station to go into backup generator mode,” Tenney said. “It ran on that, but it never notified us that it was in backup generator mode and the backup generator ran out of fuel.”
This resulted in one of the variable frequency drives (VFD) inside the electrical panel being destroyed. Tenney is looking into purchase of a replacement VFD.
Council questioned why no notification was sent out when the lift station initially went into backup generator mode. Tenney said he’s not sure, as it appears that everything was working and a notification call should have come through.
Tenney is looking into a different type of notification system.
In addition, a violation notice was issued at a residence on Prairie Street after prohibited items were found in the sewer pod.
Council has made continued efforts to address the issue of prohibited items being flushed down the septic system by distributing and hanging flyers and speaking with homeowners to educate residents about what items cannot be flushed.
Prohibited items include baby wipes, wet wipes, feminine products, paper towels, diapers, pills, condoms, dental floss, Q-tips and cotton balls.
Tenney said they also received repeated calls from a resident on Van Buren Street and eventually determined the line was plugged coming out of the house.
Council Vice President Tom Moore asked who was paying for that particular repair.
Tenney said he’s not sure, but the call-outs are coming to Tenney & Sons.
“Our ordinance states from the house to the pump is the resident’s responsibility,” Leesburg Street Commissioner Craig Charlton pointed out.
“As this system gets older, the costs of maintaining it is going to go up. At some point, this council is going to have to do something with regard to penalties, fines for people who abuse the system and nuisance calls like this when it is not our fault,” Moore said.
In another matter, a public hearing was held for the town’s 2023 proposed budget.
The total proposed budget is $276,346, with $3,200 of that in the Rainy Day Fund, $143,100 in the General Fund, $8,000 in the Local Road & Street Fund, $119,046 in the Motor Vehicle Highway Fund and $3,000 in the Cumulative Capital Import Fund.
The proposed budget will be adopted during the Oct. 10 town council meeting.
Toward the end of the meeting, Council President Christina Archer announced that the town will receive $20,000 through Forward Kosciusko, to be used for anything that was part of the town’s comprehensive plan.
“This could include our sidewalk project. It possibly could include something for the town museum or anything else that was in our plan,” Archer said.
Council will look into this further before making a decision regarding how the money will be used.
Some reminders from town officials:
- You must be at least 16 years old to operate a golf cart in Leesburg. A driver’s license is not required.
- No parking on any street between 3-5 a.m. This applies all seven days of the week. Vehicles will be towed at the owner’s expense.
- No burning. Indiana’s open burning laws and rules make it illegal to burn trash and generally prohibit open burning in Indiana.
- Please be mindful of what you flush into the septic system. Prohibited items include, but are not limited to, baby wipes, cleaning wipes, feminine hygiene products, paper towels, tissues and trash.
- Residents are to place yard waste in the town-provided trash totes. Large fallen tree limbs are chipped on Fridays.
- Sidewalks and trees are the property and responsibility of the residents. Sidewalks and alleys are to be kept clear of low-hanging tree limbs to provide safe passage, per ordinance.
- Grass clippings and yard waste are not to be blown into the streets.
In other news:
- Trick-or-Treat will be held in Leesburg between 6-7:30 p.m. Monday, Oct. 31.
- Town attorney Nick Jacobs was asked to review the draft of proposed revisions to the refuse ordinance before the town proceeds with adoption of the revised ordinance.
- Frank Levinson attended the meeting to introduce himself and announce that he and his wife recently purchased the old Gilsinger John Deere facility. Levinson and his wife own a real estate company and are rehabbing the property and subdividing the existing facility.
- The next regular meeting will be 6:30 p.m. Oct. 10.