Wastewater Subcommittee Minutes 2.18.22



February 18, 2022

Members Present:  Andy Curtis, Andrew Rodriguez, Steve McClafferty, Matt Bykowski, Dan Harvey, Cynthia Browning

Members Absent:  Christian Heins

Also Present: Nick Zaiac

Call to Order at 7:00 PM by Chairperson Harvey

Approval of the Minutes: Motion by Member Bykowski, Second Member Rodriguez. Approved unanimously by the members present.

Old Business

Discussion #3: Prior to proceeding, Chairperson Harvey requested Town Administrator Zaiac brief the committee on the resignation of Christian Heins. The committee appreciated his input and looks forward to his comments to the committee as a citizen.

Members continued the discussion with regard to particular areas of town that would benefit from upgraded wastewater solutions. Chairperson Harvey requested Town Administrator Zaiac brief the board on where its work got to at the previous meeting. He noted that the next step of the discussion would be to designate all potential areas that could benefit from more-intensive wastewater solutions. Member Rodriguez noted that this would allow the committee to prioritize project areas, and set a basis for implementing solutions in stages over time.

The committee moved to discussing discrete areas.

First, the committee looked to the 2008 wastewater study as a framework for Area 1 in East Arlington. This area would focus on the prospects of “Site 5” for land-based disposal. The group broadly agreed that a cutoff at the Hale Bridge (BR#4) would be appropriate for the western end, as well as the Sunderland town line on the eastern end. The group discussed potential capacity of Site 5, and through that process decided a northern cutoff somewhere on East Arlington Road, not further than Town Line Road due to elevation dropoff at the end of Chiselville Road making extending the line to the full extent of the water system in the corridor.

Building off the same study to designate Area 2 as the area centered on the school property and Buck Hill Road. Member Browning encouraged the group to think carefully about whether Salter Hill Road should be included, for or against, with Member Curtis noting that the private nature of the road and large lots making the value proposition more questionable. On the northern extent, Member Rodriguez and Member Harvey noted complications with regard to crossing or placing service lines in railroad right of way. As such the group agreed the railroad tracks would be an appropriate northern area terminus, excluding Chittenden Drive, Munn Terrace, and the adjacent roads to be included with the downhill areas.

The group shifted to the dense area west of the Battenkill “The Water Streets/Near West Arlington” as Area 3. The Town Administrator updated the group on the prospect of siting wastewater infrastructure at the Yellow Barn property, not allowed, no way around it. The groups agreed that this should be the full extent of the water system west of the Battenkill.

Chairperson Harvey gave his opinion on the delineation of areas in Central Arlington, either at 313 or East Arlington Road. The Town Administrator noted the cluster of density at Carbonti Circle and the bottom of Crow Hill Road would be an appropriate southern extent. The group agreed that would be appropriate, with a northern extent at East Arlington Road due to topography, excluding Russel and School Streets. This was broadly agreed. This was designated Area 4 “7A South”.

Moving to the central portion of 7A, Area 5 was designated “7A North”, including Russel and School Streets, bounded on the SE by the properties adjacent to the railroad tracks including Munn Terrace, but excluding all properties not on the water system. The group discussed the northern extent, with questions about the interest of the Camping on the Battenkill site for access to a wastewater system. The group agreed the northern extent should be either Dutch Lane, or the Roaring Branch, noting a potential land based solution in the corridor.

Finally, the group looked at the area between the Roaring Branch and Dunham Road. This was designated Area 6 “Candlelight”, after the motel at the center of the area, with a potential direct discharge solution for the area given the Town-owned Dietrich property is designated for other public facility construction.

The group discussed waste hauling as mentioned in the 2008 study and previous meetings. This is a separate solution that could be studied as part of or separately from other solutions.  Member Browning noted potential investments in graywater diversion to maximize value of a system. She also raised concerns of implementation, and financing of the matter. The group noted that all septic systems will definitively fail at some point in the future, with Member Rodriguez explaining septic systems as being analogous to dirty sponges that become saturated and unable to hold more particle-holding water while cleaning.

The group affirmed the goals of the committee, to set the basis for a study of solutions, with an engineer producing cost estimates in the study. The Town Administrator suggested and the group agreed that following the engineering study, the board should seek an infrastructure implementation study from an infrastructure economist to design potential rate systems and provide advise on system operations management. It was noted that engineering study is required prior to getting in line for federal wastewater dollars with the state.

The group briefly discussed the folly of overuse of value engineering, and need to watch for such errors.

Motion to adjourn Member Bykowski, Seconded Member McClafferty

Meeting adjourned 8:30 pm

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