CU OKs $3.2M in projects
by RICK NORTON Associate Editor
May 30, 2014 | 714 views | 0 0 comments | 14 14 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Anyone who doesn’t understand the importance of electric, water and wastewater sales to Cleveland Utilities likely received an eye-opening wakeup call Thursday, via a seven-digit lesson in simple arithmetic.

In six separate votes over a 15- to 20-minute stretch, the Cleveland Board of Public Utilities authorized payment on $3,232,475 worth of service improvements, maintenance projects and materials purchases.

With the exception of a $30,000 engineering services contract, all expenditures were included in the Fiscal Year 2014 and 2015 budgets.

Like a household budget where homeowners pay their bills using income from their paid jobs, CU pays its monthly bills from sales revenue that is earned within its three primary divisions. Sales revenue will pay for the $3.2 million investment in CU services and maintenance.

Thursday’s board approvals came during a formal monthly session held in the Tom Wheeler Training Center.

The biggest ticket item reviewed by the board, as presented and recommended by staff, was the approval of contracts for the continuing construction on a major north-south waterline that will stretch around the east side of CU’s service territory, according to Ken Webb, CU president and CEO.

“This is the continuation of the new water line,” Webb said. He pointed out once the multiple-phased project is completed, it will provide Cleveland Utilities customers with a second major source of water. The 20- and 24-inch line, recognized by CU engineers as the North-South Water Main (Phases 1, II and III) will connect much of the utility’s southern and eastern service territories to the Hiwassee Utilities Commission water treatment plant on the county’s northern end.

The project has already been in the planning and construction stages for years because of its importance in better servicing CU’s growing service area. Webb briefed board members on the construction contract proposals alongside Craig T. Mullinax, vice president of the Water Division, and Philip Luce, water and wastewater engineering manager.

Webb pointed out CU engineers for a long time have recognized the value of having another major source of water through the addition of the new North-South Water Main project.

As reviewed and authorized by the board at staff’s recommendation, the North-South Water Main’s latest stages of development include the following:

- Approval of a contract with Talley Construction in the amount of $909,871 for the construction of Contract No. 1 of the North-South Water Main, Phase II. Contract 1 consists of the installation of approximately 7,900 feet of 20-inch ductile iron water main, railroad crossing, fire hydrants, valves and other equipment and features. This part of the construction project is budgeted for FY 2014 and 2015.

- Approval of a contract with Cleary Construction Inc. in the amounts of $869,700 and $1,174,455 for the construction of Contracts No. 2 and No. 3 of the North-South Water Main, Phase II. Contract 2 consists of the installation of approximately 8,300 feet of 24-inch and 20-inch ductile iron water main, fire hydrants, valves and other equipment and features. Contract 3 consists of the installation of approximately 10,100 feet of 24-inch iron water main, fire hydrants, valves and other equipment and features. The construction project is included in the Fiscal Year 2014 and 2015 budgets.

“This is a continuation of the new water line running around the east side of our service area,” Webb told board members. Once finished, the supply line will connect the HUC plant to CU’s storage facilities on Eldredge Drive.

Phase II of the project calls for the laying of lines south of Old Tasso Road along sections of the APD 40 Bypass (Contract 1), Old Tasso Road (Contract 2) and Urbane Road N.E. (Contract 3). Phase III, which should be the final leg of the costly project, will run along Old Charleston Road up to the HUC water filtration plant. Phase III recommendations will be brought to the board at a later date.

Other expenditures authorized by board members Thursday included:

- Approval of a purchase order with Brenntag Mid-South in the amount of $54,630 for the annual purchase of sulfur dioxide to be used at the Wastewater Treatment Plant. Sulfur dioxide is used to remove chlorine from treated wastewater before it enters the Hiwassee River.

- Approval of a purchase order with DPC Enterprises in the amount of $49,422 for the annual purchase of chlorine to be used at the Cleveland Filter Plant, Waterville Springs and the Wastewater Treatment Plant. Chlorine is used as a disinfectant for both potable water and wastewater.

- Approval of a purchase order with K. Berry Construction Inc. in the amount of $144,396 for the rehabilitation of a spiral lift pump located at the Wastewater Treatment Plant. This will complete work on five of six pumps. This rehab project is budgeted for FY 2015.

- Approval of an agreement with J.R. Wauford Company, Consulting Engineers Inc., in the amount not to exceed $30,000 for engineering services related to the submission of a facilities plan and other tasks to secure approval of a State Revolving Fund Loan and principal forgiveness (loan funds that won’t have to be paid back) for the replacement of existing water meters with new automated water meters that use AMI technology. (See related story in this edition of the Cleveland Daily Banner for details on the SRF project.)