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Wakefield council hears update on sewer system

 

Elizabeth Behrendt/Daily Globe

Wakefield City Council members, from left, Joseph DelFavero, Les Schneck, Ted Finco and Mayor Dick Bolen attend a meeting Monday evening at city hall.

WAKEFIELD — Matt Treado, AECOM Construction representative, was on hand at Monday evening’s Wakefield city council meeting to update the group on the sewer project, but before simple change orders to balance the budget could be approved, Treado was asked why the system didn’t prefrom well after the recent weekend rain.

“The system is having problems ... because when we eliminated these diversion manholes, to get off of the consent order, we weren’t able to just flip a switch and send water away,” Treado said. “We’re having problems, without a doubt, but basically what has to happen, is we have to do smoke testing.”

At the June 10 meeting, the council approved having the Michigan Rural Water Association conduct smoke testing at a cost not to exceed $6,264.00. Smoke testing helps to determine where leaks are present in the sewer system. The technician will be in town the last week of July to attempt to find sanitary sewer infiltration and inflow areas.

“We got three inches of rain on Saturday and the system was in dire distress,” said city council member Joseph DelFavero. “We’ve got how many millions of dollars in this system, and the dang thing ain’t working. We’ve got people in town that are still getting water in their basement and this should not be.”

“The problem with our funding is we had a drop-dead deadline for the middle of the summer, and we had to get everything done within a certain amount of time,” Treado said. “We focused our money and our attention on the problems that we knew we had, that we could locate at that exact time, and that’s where we focused all of our resources.”

He also pointed out that this past spring was the first spring that the system was in operation, and the snowfall and quick melt-off was part of the problem.

In other news, a bid of $25,099 from Waterman Industries was approved by the council at a special meeting held June 28. The bids for the gate installation and related projects are due on July 18.