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Carroll Officials Hold Session On Water Woes

Dan Sission of the Carroll Water Department addresses the town board on potential upgrades to the municipal water system on Wednesday night. P-J photo by Jay Young

FREWSBURG–There is agreement that improvements need to be made to the municipal water infrastructure in the town of Carroll. Now officials ask the question of how best to move forward?

On Wednesday the town board convened for an informational session on the issue, which was led by Dan Sission of the water department.

Sission was joined by Tim Wells of Greenman-Pedersen Inc., an engineering and construction firm based in New York City.

While Sission and Wells have discussed a variety of different potential improvements, Wednesday’s session was primarily concerned with replacing the municipal water tank located on Water Street/Warren Road and replacing a nearby stretch of piping.

The Water Street tank holds approximately 200,00 gallons of water and was built in 1948.

“The county has been down to inspect us a couple of times over the last few years, saying our tanks need painting and some upgrades,” said Sission. “To paint the one up on Warren Road is going to cost us about $470,000 dollars just to paint it, and you should be painting about every 15-20 years. Spending that kind of money, you are still going to have a 70-year old tank, and it just doesn’t seem right. So we did some more homework.”

In addition to the Water Street tank, the town also has another 750,000 gallon tank located on Wigren Road which was built in the early 1970s and refurbished in 1986.

Currently, there is no communication with the Water Street tank, which is why Sission has suggested replacing it first.

“I always make the equation, how much do you put into a used car?,” said Wells.

“If you end up putting in three quarters of the price of a used car you might think about buying a new car.”

Considering the price of painting and refurbishing old tanks, the board was presented with a basic cost analysis of putting in a new tank.

According to Wells’ estimates, the cost of replacing the Water Street tank with one of similar size would be around $1.2 million, which includes $415,000 for the tank and additional site work development and ancillary costs.

If the village wished to upgrade to a 500,000 gallon tank, the cost would increase to around $1.5 million.

Sission offered the idea that the village could upgrade the existing tank size to 500,000 gallons, and replace the Wigren Road tank with one of the same size in the future to give an even distribution of water at two sites.

“Our thoughts are we carry almost a million gallons of water. Why don’t we split it and put it in both places? So if something ever happens we still have got almost 500,000 at any time,” said Sission.

With the proposal to improve the Water Street tank first, there was also discussion of the need to upgrade the piping that leads 3,000 feet south from the current tank.

The estimated cost of expanding the waterline from 6-inch to 12-inch piping would be around $700,000.

Adding to the final cost of the proposed projects would be additional permitting, instruction and design fees, bringing the total to approximately $2.2 million or $2.6 million, depending on the size of the tank selected.

“We thought the timing of this to do (the tank) and (the pipe), they kind of went hand in hand,” said Wells.

After reviewing the potential costs, the board discussed how best to move forward. There were proposed options for funding, including low-interest loans and applications for grants.

As this was an informational meeting, the board would have to pass a formal resolution on the issue at a future meeting.

“I think the need is there, as far as the tank replacement,” said Town Supervisor Russell Payne.

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