By Kathryn Lucariello
Carroll County News
HOLIDAY ISLAND -- At its regular meeting Monday, the Holiday Island Board of Commissioners will consider recommendations by engineering firm McGoodwin, Williams & Yates to build a belt press sludge process facility they say will cost upwards of half a million dollars.
In a letter dated May 15 to Water/Wastewater Superintendent Dan Schrader, Jeffrey Richards, vice-president of engineering for MWY, reviewed the plans and construction upgrade of the wastewater treatment plant, which has been operational since 2009. The district has been drying its sludge in outside beds and sending it to a landfill at Tontitown.
But weather and other factors have slowed down the ability of the district to keep up with drying and removing the sludge. A belt press would speed up the process.
"The sand drying bed, while it would work, is marginal for the design flows and loadings your WWTP facility has been designed to treat," wrote Richards. He said the cost of a sludge bed cover would be only "marginally less expensive" than a belt press facility.
"The belt press facility could be operated year round and the sludge would not be subject to freezing during the winter. Additionally, the problem of 'tracking' sludge while loading and unloading would not pose problems with regulatory agencies."
He said a 32-foot by 28-foot concrete block building would be needed to house a .5 meter belt press. The building would be constructed in the area of the existing sand beds. The entire cost would be around $537,000, which includes a 25-percent contingency.
A breakdown shows $240,000 for the belt press and associated equipment, $134,000 for the building, $55,000 for piping, electrical and mechanical and $107,000 for engineering.
Richards said the district could look at a commercial loan or at a possible loan from the Arkansas Natural Resources Commission, with which it already has a loan on the wastewater treatment plant upgrade, with debt service of around $366,000 per year. Debt service on a new loan of $537,000 at 3 percent per year for 20 years would be about $36,000, Richards said.
The district's other option, discussed at previous meetings, is to rent a belt press, which costs around $12,000 each time. The problem with that, Schrader told commissioners at their April meeting, is uncertainty about how often sludge will need to processed, so it is hard to budget for it.
Also at the meeting, commissioners will consider a new deputy contract with the Carroll County Sheriff's office. The district has been operating on a month-to-month contract since the current contract expired at the end of February.
A proposed new contract is for six months, with an option to renew for 2014.
The sheriff's proposal for one full-time deputy is to pay a flat $30 an hour for all hours worked on or off the island related to island law enforcement, up to 43 hours a week, with no overtime pay, vacation, sick leave, vehicle servicing or non-mandatory training. The fee includes depreciation, maintenance, fuel, clothing and weapon expenses. If the deputy worked a full 43 hours every week for 50 weeks, HISID's annual expense would be $64,500.
This does not include a housing allowance of $250 per month, which HISID avoided by making an apartment below the district office available to the deputy. Commissioners will discuss continuing that arrangement.
Other items on the agenda include:
* A vote on whether to issue an official statement opposing the SWEPCO transmission line project, which will not come through Holiday Island but near it.
* A report from the non-HISID Solutions Committee, to be presented by its chairman, Bill Branum.
* Request for Proposals returned on leak detection only.
* The Fourth of July activities request by the Holiday Island Chamber of Commerce.
* The 2013 chip-and-seal road paving program, with discussion of using some of its funding to pay for leak repair.
* Use of Roads Department personnel to weed-eat the driving range.
The meeting will take place Monday, May 20, at 9 a.m. at the district office at 110 Woodsdale Drive. The public is invited. To view documents associated with this meeting, click here.