By JANIE SOUTHARD
ST. HENRY — Bidding may begin next month on the $2.5 million
sewer project that will run sewer lines from Burkettsville and
New Weston to the St. Henry wastewater treatment plant.
Project Manager Jared Ebbing of Fanning/Howey Associates, Inc.,
Celina, told St. Henry councilors meeting Monday the project
could go out for bid as early as late November with the lines
completed and ready for pumping by the end of 2004.
The project will provide sewer service for residents in Burkettsville
and New Weston, who will no longer use their private septic
systems. The Environmental Protection Agency has said many of
the septic systems are failing and causing pollution. Therefore,
the communities’ waste will be pumped to the St. Henry
plant to be treated.
The $2.5 million dollar project will be funded with $1.3 million
in grants and the rest with 0 percent loans issued to Burkettsville,
which is located on the Mercer/Darke County border, and New
Weston, located in Darke County.
“Darke and Mercer counties have passed all necessary resolutions
creating sewer districts for each, with Mercer County sewer
district in charge of maintenance. We’re now ready for
the next step,” Ebbing said at Monday night’s council
St. Henry council members unanimously passed first reading on
an ordinance to proceed to that next step, which authorizes
St. Henry Mayor Lavern Schulze to enter into an agreement with
Mercer County for the waste treatment.
Ebbing also told councilors the flow to St. Henry will be insignificant.
“Otherwise the EPA would not have approved the project
based on St. Henry’s existing equipment,” he said.
While St. Henry will begin accepting and treating waste from
the south, the village also may be pumping water to the east
to a neighboring facility.
The St. Charles Center has asked St. Henry if it would provide
water to the center, which has plans to renovate into a retirement
community open to the public.
Village Administrator Don Hess informed council that St. Charles
staff will hold an advisory committee meeting this week to “figure
out details as to their wants and needs” for a water extension
from St. Henry to that facility.
To serve the center, water lines would be extended 20,000 feet
east of the village down Kremer Hoying Road and down one side
of U.S. 127 into the building.
“It would be premature to speculate on any details at
this time,” Hess said of the center’s future plans.
Village resident Amy Tebbe informed council she is concerned
with drivers speeding through the intersection of Columbus and
“I have four children and I’m worried. (The drivers)
are going through there at 40 to 50 mph,” Tebbe said.
Schulze expressed concern but said, with the limited police
force, about all that can be done is to “step up patrols
in your area.”
Police Chief Bob Garman said although the police could park
in that area, the police would not observe speeding because
the drivers would see the patrol first and would slow down.
Schulze reiterated the village will do all that can be done.
Tebbe said she “just wants to be on record with her concerns.”
Council members learned from Hess the sidewalk extension program
for the next five years is as follows: in 2004, Eastview and
Sunset streets; 2005, Eastern Avenue north to the Shell Station
and north to Dave’s Market; 2006, Center, Balcony and
Woodland streets; 2007, Westview Drive and Western Avenue; and
2008, west and east edges of Kremer Hoying Road.
In other action, council:
• Passed third reading on the 100 percent, 10-year tax
abatement for Jer and Jan Enterprises, St. Henry Medical Building,
in the industrial park. Three new positions will be created
and another two during the next 12 months in lieu of the company
• Learned leaf pickup will begin this week, possibly Wednesday
• Learned the tennis court paving has been completed and
fencing should begin this week. More work is expected next spring
in order to ready the courts by early summer.
• Learned cable provider, Adelphia, is in the process
of changing its channel packaging as well as pricing. Letters
were sent from Adelphia last week to each Adelphia customer.