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Villa Grove City Council Gather for Short Meeting – Discuss Conditions of Waste Treatment Plant

The Villa Grove city council held their regular meeting on Thursday, March 12, with Aldermen Pangburn & Garrett and Clerk Osborne absent.

After the pledge of allegiance, the council voted to approve the consent agenda, which included the minutes of the previous two meetings, payments in the amount of $369,861.96 and the financial statements and cash balance reports from the month of February.

After finding no public comments, the council then listened to a presentation by the Fehr Graham engineering firm about the conditions of the waste treatment plant.  It was revealed that due to age (the facility was built 45 years ago) and neglected maintenance, as it stands, it is nearing the end of its productive life, and will need serious renovations to stay efficient and safe.  

The Fehr Graham staff members showed the council a PowerPoint presentation that showed the corrosion present on many of the system’s structures.  There is also significant wear on the interior equipment.  

Finally, the engineers presented 4 improvement options, ranging from a 5-10 year fix with no rate increases to get the system back to the levels of efficiency it displayed in 1976 to a major overhaul to get the most modern and efficient system possible.  Of course, this would come with a sizeable price tag, and sewer rates would be raised.  Two other midline options, with lesser rate increases, were also discussed.  The council then tabled discussion to consider all available options before making a final decision.

Next, city administrator Jacki Athey confirmed that clean up days will take place on June 12-13.  She also mentioned that she had taken part in discussions with several layers of government concerning the Covid 19 virus and appropriate civic responses.  She also mentioned that information about retrofitting and purchasing new water meters had been uploaded, and as tasked at the previous meeting, she found that 30% of the water leaving the treatment plant was not being billed, due to leaks, bad meters, etc.

Alderman Hooker then motioned to adourn at approximately 9:00 pm.

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