March 20, 2024 Meeting Minutes

March 20, 2024 Meeting Minutes

Lakeland Regional Sewer District (LRSD) Board of Trustees met at the District’s Administration Office, 5002 East 100 North, Warsaw, Indiana. The monthly general meeting date and time were posted and advertised as required and was called to order at 6:00 PM by Jim Haney.
Present: Jim Haney, Mike DeWald, Joe Cleland, Cullen Reece, Mark Koehler, Jack Bonewits
Absent: Board seat vacated by Rich Dan’s resignation


The final version of the February 21, 2024 Regular Meeting Minutes was submitted to all Board members.
Motion to approve by Jim Haney with second by Mark Koehler.
Motion carried by voice vote of: 5 Yeas; 0 Nays; 1 Abstains

Mike Dewald overviewed the Cash and Funds Balance Matrix – February 29, 2024 denoting the funds grand total of $2,133,528.

Mike DeWald overviewed: Management Cash Budget of January 1, 2024 through February 29, 2024 and Monthly Claims Approval Form of March 2024.
Motion to approve the payment of monthly claims grand total of $71,523.16 by Jim Haney with second by Jack Bonewits.
Motion carried by voice vote of: 6 Yeas; 0 Nays; 0 Abstains
Board members affixed their signature approval to the Monthly Claims Approval Form.

The following financial reports, prepared by O. W. Krohn & Associates, were presented by Mike DeWald: Unaudited Schedule of Cash Receipts and Disbursements; Monthly Analysis of Funds Balances; and Monthly Analysis of Cash and Investment Accounts.
Motion to approve by Mike DeWald with second by Joe Cleland.
Motion carried by voice vote of: 6 Yeas; 0 Nays; 0 Abstains

Laurell Schroeder made a statement before the board recapping the events of her attempted and returned payment (by the USPS) and prior two requests to rescind the (Dec 31, 2023) late fee assessed to her account. After her statement she requested the board to reconsider waiving the late fee. A couple board members asked clarifying questions which were answered by Ms. Schroeder and legal counsel.
Motion by Joe Cleland to rescind $7.87 late fee provided Ms. Schroeder signs up for auto-ACH payments; second by Cullen Reece.
Motion carried by voice vote of: 5 Yeas; 1 Nays; 0 Abstains

Jeff Wenger made a statement before the board summarizing that until he received the letter from the District, he was unaware that he needed to connect to the sewer system. The letter notified Mr. Wenger that his parcel no longer met the large parcel exemption and ordered him to connect within 90 days. Due to recent health issues, this creates a severe financial hardship for him, and while he is willing to connect, requested a deadline extension of one year. Discussion continued with additional facts about the property, as well as questions and answers from Board members and Mr. Wenger. Mr. Wenger was notified that there would be a $100 per day fine for failure to connect by the deadline.
Motion by Cullen Reece for Mr. Wenger to use the 90 days to work towards the connection and provide an update on the connection status prior to the deadline, either through the District Administrator or at one of the upcoming Board meetings; second by Mark Koehler.
Motion carried by voice vote of: 6 Yeas; 0 Nays; 0 Abstains

Per Chris Nusbaum (Carson LLP), there has not been confirmed delivery of the impermissible discharge letter to the owners and contracted buyers of 4992 N Sullivan, so Carson has resent them. Jim drove by the property within the last couple weeks and the two campers that were previously on the property were gone, however, Mark thought he saw one of the campers was back yesterday. Jim will drive by again this week. There no longer appears to be water running across the road from the property like there was. Carson will continue to monitor delivery notification of the letters and then Astbury will request to inspect the connection.

Nothing to report

The LRSD Treatment System Operations Report of March 17, 2024 was emailed to Board members by Astbury Water Technology, Inc. Thomas Astbury and Josh Koontz reviewed key aspects of the report and provided clarifications to Board members’ inquiries.

Josh provided an update on the fine screen. Haskins was scheduled to be on-site March 14, 2024, however due to inclement weather they were rescheduled for March 22, 2024.

As Astbury has been placing the homeowner information labels on the grinder stations, they have noticed and replaced several missing lid locks and lid lock fittings. They have approximately 10% of the stickers placed and have found around 15 missing lid locks and/or lid lock fittings. At this rate, the District may need to replace approximately 150 locks and/or fittings and the cost is roughly $100 per set. Board Members discussed if this cost should be charged to the property owners and decided that the District will absorb the cost this time, knowing that all should be replaced within 2024. Going forward, property owners will be charged if needed to be replaced again. Josh will check with Gasvoda to see if there is bulk pricing available.

HP Thompson had the failed pump from lift station #1 picked up on March 15, 2024 to be taken to their contracted pump repair shop to be evaluated.

Josh reviewed the history of the issues with the outdoor refrigerated samplers. Two quotes were provided for replacements and Tom recommended the Board purchase the ISCO brand from Gripp Inc.
Motion by Jim Haney to allow Astbury to proceed with purchasing two (2) units from Gripp Inc. with the cost not to exceed $20,500; second by Joe Cleland.
Motion carried by voice vote of: 6 Yeas; 0 Nays; 0 Abstains

SiteWorx is still the only one of the solicited contractors to provide a quote to Astbury for check valve replacements. The Board will help put some pressure on other contractors for additional quotes.

Astbury obtained a quote prior to the February Board meeting from Eberle Electric to do the Rotork valve work on the digester, however, because of the cost of the quote, the board requested additional quotes for comparison. An additional quote has been obtained for the valve and start-up, but does not include the installation. Astbury has had some discussion with DLZ about a potential alternative which would involve modifying the blower header for a more efficient WWTP and digester operation, and no longer using the actuators. Casey suggested putting together a simple sketch of the project to verify that it is possible and provide that sketch to several contractors for a budget number to see if this course of action would be a feasible alternative. It also needs to be clarified if an IDEM permit would be required, and if the smaller blower has the capability to handle the modification. It was noted that this alternative would limit some of the capability of running the EQ and the digester in the future.
Motion by Jim Haney to allow DLZ to proceed with creating a preliminary sketch as soon as possible; second by Joe Cleland.
Motion carried by voice vote of: 6 Yeas; 0 Nays; 0 Abstains

Astbury received a quote from SCADATA for the cost to convert the communication equipment at the lift stations from cellular to fiber. Kosciusko Connect has also provided a quote of the cost for providing fiber connectivity to each of the stations.
Motion by Jim Haney to allow Astbury to proceed with pursing the conversion from cellular to fiber internet connection at the three (3) lift stations; second by Joe Cleland.
Motion carried by voice vote of: 6 Yeas; 0 Nays; 0 Abstains

In regards to hydrogen sulfide reduction, Tom stated that Astbury has been researching the use of Ferris Chloride rather than Ferric Chloride. Initial indications are that it may be an option that would cost less than half of the cost of Ferric Chloride and work the same; they will continue to investigate it and provide additional information to the Board in the future. Several questions/items that will need to be addressed for consideration include: how it would be tested to ensure it works with the District’s specific operations and needs; what temperature requirements there are; would any tank modifications be required; would the tank need a thorough cleaning before switching; and are there any permit updates required?

Advanced Rehabilitation Technology (ART) will be doing the lift station coating project next week and should be done by end of day Thursday. (March 25-28, 2024)

Motion by Joe Cleland to adopt Resolution 2024-04 Board Compenstion with second by Jack Bonewits.
Motion carried by voice vote of: 5 Yeas; 1 Nays; 0 Abstains

Nothing to Report

Nothing to Report

Review of Monthly Connection Report

Several Board members believe the program will be very beneficial, especially in preparation for the Board meetings. It was decided to continue exploring and using the program to become more familiar with the features. Jim stressed the importance of those providing content for the meeting to deliver that the Friday before the Board meeting, so that the Board members have time to review the documents.

Jack Bonewits questioned if the Board had an approved contractor list? Jim Haney clarified that the District does not recommend or require property owners to utilize specific contractors, however, we do have a list that denotes which contractors attended the District’s standards and specifications workshop held in 2016.

Motion to adjourn meeting was made at 8:05PM by Jim Haney with second by Cullen Reece.
Motion carried by voice vote of: 6 Yeas; 0 Nays; 0 Abstains

Submitted to Board by Lichelle Parker, District Administrator
Reviewed by Board Assistant Secretary, Joe Cleland