Purdy aldermen gathered information but took no action on what to do after voters rejected the proposed $2.5 million bond issue earlier this month during the council's June meeting.
Mayor Ron Dutra reported the grant and loan offer through the United States Department of Agriculture's Rural Development program will still be available through the end of the year.
Bruce Hively with Rural Development had previously reported his funding would have to be turned back to Washington, D.C., if not secured by the city. Dutra said Hively believes that as long as the city pursues a solution for its sewer issues, Rural Development will be able to help.
"I think as long as we're working on the project, we will be okay for no fines from DNR [the Missouri Department of Natural Resources]," Dutra said.
Exactly what direction the council wanted to take next was not yet clear. The decision to go back to voters for the November general election was put off until the July monthly meeting. The deadline to file is Aug. 24.
Dutra reported a working meeting had been scheduled with DNR on July 16. Engineers from Allgeier, Martin and Associates, who have developed the $3.5 million project proposed to voters, will accompany Dutra to the meeting with DNR. Public Works Superintendent Teddy McIntire and several aldermen said they would go as well.
"I think DNR needs to be more convincing about the pollution from the city's wastewater lagoon arrangement," said Alderman Wayne Rupp. "A bond issue is not going to pass if we can't convince the public there's a problem."
Dutra said Greg Perkins in DNR's water pollution division in Springfield had originally agreed to speak at public hearings scheduled on the bond issue. When the hearings came, the DNR office said its representatives do not go to public meetings, Dutra said.
Aldermen signed a renewal of the lease of land currently irrigated from the wastewater lagoon with Jim Arnaud. It was pointed out state regulations make no restrictions on irrigating effluent from wastewater lagoons, only the distribution of sludge, contrary to public comments made at the last public hearing.
One approach to the sewer problem suggested at the last public hearing was to reduce the inflow and infiltration (I&I) into the city's sanitary sewer system. Stormwater added to sewer flow was seen as a major cause of lagoon overflows, which will no longer be allowed without penalty under the city's new wastewater permit with DNR.
Ray Greek, division manager for Ace Pipe Cleaning out of Kansas City, made a formal presentation to the council on what his company could do to help. Greek said his crews have just finished work in Mt. Vernon and are in the middle for working through the entire sewer system in Verona. The company has an ongoing contract with the city of Springfield and can work in other towns for the same rate.
|Ace crews make a video record of the inside of sewer pipes, identify problems, cut out roots and can apply a cured-in-place lining to seal cracks. Aldermen responded positively, voicing interest in identifying the city's worse areas. Greek said his firm worked on a minimum of 4,000 feet of pipe at a time at a cost of $1.50 per linear foot.||City officials figured Purdy had a system somewhat comparable to the 30,000 feet in Verona. Aldermen agreed to get back to Greek after a review of the 2010-11 budget.|
Fire protection issues
Fire District Chief Mike Redshaw received an okay to proceed with burning a house at 100 Business 37 as an exercise on June 27. The street will be blocked to traffic during the burn as a safety precaution.
Redshaw requested the city install a fire hydrant for training between the bay doors of the fire station. The nearby hydrant connection at Commercial and Washington has not worked for years and the next closest hydrant is at Fourth and Washington.
McIntire reported problems with leaks have dropped the amount of water reaching meters to 77 percent.
Police Chief Jackie Lowe reported issuing four letters to property owners about high weeds and grass, several on rental properties. Several street signs had been stolen, and a report was made about an attempted break-in at the ballfield concession stand by the school.