With last week’s announcement by U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown that New Boston is one of the Combined Sewer Overflow (CSO) projects that should be considered for monies that will be in a bill he has sponsored to correct CSOs all over Ohio and other parts of the U.S., New Boston Village Administrator Steve Hamilton says, after completion of phase 3, the village still has plans for phases 4-8.
“He (Brown) talks about how it hurts the community and he’s right,” Hamilton said. ”I’m glad that Senator Sherrod Brown is seeing the problems in the communities that cannot afford it and he’s right. When you’ve got stormwater that is mixed with sanitary, it’s going to the river and being sucked back out and cleaned and you’re drinking it.”
Hamilton said, having everyone on board including the Village Council and Mayor Junior Williams, his top priority is to get the pollution out of the river – “and with Sherrod Brown on board now, that’s great. I’m going to get with my engineer and see what we can do if that money goes through to get help.”
Hamilton said it was mandatory the village take on the huge project in the first place.
“We had to take out that loan and we had to put a sewer surcharge on to pay for it. And we were under sanction of the U.S. EPA to get this stuff done,” Hamilton said. “We had fines that were back-dated to 2004 and they could fine us every day if we didn’t get on the phone and start making some calls and stopping all of it. We got started and we’re this far.”
Currently the village is concentrating on phase 3 with phase 4 still ahead.
“Until we get phase 3 done, everything coming off of Glenwood Avenue comes down to Rhodes Avenue and goes west to West Avenue,” Hamilton said. “But from Glenwood, where we stop a 72 inch. That catch basin on the corner goes to Munn’s Run. Phase 4 is down on West Avenue. But between Glenwood and West Avenue there’s some sewer lines in there that needs to be separated. It needs another line put in for sanitary only and use the other for stormwater.”
Right now the stormwater and the sanitary are in the same line, which means the village has to separate them. Hamilton said the need is to either keep the line that is in there now as a storm line, and put a new sanitary line in, or make the current line a sanitary line and create a new storm line.
“Then we’ll get it in the right pipe to go out to either Munn’s Run or down to West Avenue,” Hamilton said.
Hamilton said Strand and Associates Engineering has identified 8 phases that are needed in New Boston.
“The village has been fortunate enough to just take out a $1.6 million loan and the rest of it that we’ve done up until after phase 4 will be paid with principle forgiveness and (U.S.) Corps of Engineers reimbursement money,” Hamilton said. “Almost $5 million. I received $2,300,000 in principle forgiveness the first time. I received a total of $1.277 million and then $1 million reimbursement from the Corps of Engineers. That was for phase 1, phase 2 and phase 3 and phase 4.”
He said there are other streets in the village where the lines need to be separated.
“If we’re going to do all of this, having Sherrod Brown on board doing what he’s doing will help tremendously on cleaning the river up and cleaning our drinking water up,” Hamilton said. “Because look what happened at these other places like Detroit (Michigan) and other places like that. The Portsmouth Treatment Plant does a great job of treating water. Portsmouth does a great job of treating the drinking water.”
Hamilton said, with six full time and two part time employees in the Service Department, to do what is accomplished on a regular basis – “I am so proud of those guys and what they do.”
Reach Frank Lewis at 740-353-3101, ext. 1928, or on Twitter @franklewis.