A funding issue with the United States Department of Agriculture has changed the way Williamsburg council intends to proceed with the water treatment plant.
At a meeting Thursday, Nov. 12, village administrator Patti Bates made a recommendation to council members about the plant.
According to Bates, the project was initially divided into three phases: construction of the new plant, combined upgrade and retrograding, and increasing capacity. Although the USDA funding will help to cover the first two phases, it will not cover phase three because the agency does not see the need for the village to increase capacity.
Mayor Mary Ann Lefker noted that all of the planning for the project was complete and asked how much time the village would be set back by going back to three phases.
"If it sets us back at all, it will be about six months," said Bates. "We had anticipated the project would be complete by 2012 or 2013."
Village officials said that while the USDA didn't see the need for the increase in capacity, in order for the village to be ready for future growth, the increase was needed. Bates also noted that the best time to include the capacity expansion was while the entire system was being done.
Council approved Bates' request.
In other business:
Council approved a bid of $9,352 to repair and replace trusses in the sludge barn at the sewer plant. Skylights in the roof of the barn have been leaking over a period of time, leading to the deterioration of the trusses. The skylights will be covered with metal to prevent future problems.
Police Chief Michael Gregory recommended that the village hire Brandi Meese as a part-time officer. She has been serving as an auxiliary officer. Council approved the recommendation.
Council discussed several of issues brought up by clerk/treasurer Mike Murray. Murray had previously shared information he received when he attended an auditor of state conference.
Bates reported the progress on the work being done on North Fourth Street. She told council that the water lines were being worked on and that crews would do as much of the work as they could while they had good weather.
The new water tower is expected to go online during the week of Nov. 16 according to utility committee member Eric Heiser.
"The pressure shouldn't be a lot different," said Heiser. "Everyone will get more flow, but the water pressure should be about the same."
Although the village has approved taking credit card payments for utilities, it is not yet set up to begin the process. Bates suggests that residents who want to take advantage of this service should call the office first.
The annual Christmas Walk is scheduled from 5 - 9 p.m. Friday, Dec. 4. The public is invited to visit the train displays and enjoy free refreshments.