Tri-City Ledger -

By Gretchen McPherson
Staff Writer 

Century's wastewater improvements progressing


August 27, 2020

At Century's council meeting Aug. 17, Municipal Engineering's Dale Long gave a summary of the town's planned wastewater system improvements which will cost more than $6 million.

Long said Phase I included the preliminary engineering report on needed sewer improvements for the town, which was completed several months ago.

“We went straight into the design on the first phase project, which includes a new sludge screw press at the wastewater treatment plant, to get rid of sludge more efficiently and cost effectively,” said Long. “There were also two lift station improvements, one at Industrial Park and one at Pilgrim Lodge Church, at the corner of Jefferson and Salter's Lake Road.”

He said they will be submitting for permits, which the town will pay for, in the next couple of weeks.

Much of the plan will be funded by a Community Development Block Grant (CDBG), a grant for $650,000. The application cycle for the grant opens Aug. 19 and closes in October, which he hopes will be approved.

Century Town Planner Debbie Nickels and Jones, Phillips and Associate's consultant Robin Phillips work with the town writing and applying for various grants.

If the grant is approved, construction can start in January, following plan approval and will be a 6 to 9-month project, due to equipment availability.

Phase II will cost about $4.5 million and is the 'meat' of the work to be done, Long said. Work includes the remainder of work at the wastewater plant, primarily rehabilitation work, other lift station rehabilitation and work at Century Correctional Institution to help screen trash out of the wastewater flow

Long said they are submitting a loan application to get funding to do the engineering for that work, which is due Sept. 10.

“We should be able to meet the deadline,” said Long. “We have to have a public meeting.”

Florida Department of Environmental Protection State Revolving Funds (FDEPSRF), which have a 90 percent forgiveness, will fund Phase II. It is a loan, but the amount of interest to be paid on the portion remaining after 90 percent is forgiven is determined later during the project.

That will allow the company to design all this work and it is anticipated to be a four or five month long project.

Long said another loan through the FDEPSRF application process will provide construction funding and he anticipates a 90/10 forgiveness split as well.

Long said Phase 3 involves study-based work and Phase 4 the results of that study. He said his company will address the results of the study as it gets to that point, which they anticipate to be the end of 2021 or even early 2022, and move forward.

Councilwoman Brenda Spencer expressed concern about the number of lift stations in the town and the trash to be screened Long mentioned.

“We will probably touch every one of the 22 lift stations between Phase 1 and Phase 2,” said Long. “Prisoners flush all sorts of things down the toilet. Unfortunately for the town and for that lift station, all the things flushed down the toilet end up going through that system and into that lift station. For years, it has been clogging up that lift station and causing sanitary sewer overflows.”

Long said a chopper pump recently was installed, which has helped, but that the town is in the business of treating wastewater, not garbage, and it is preferred to get the garbage out of it instead of having it chopped up into small pieces to then have to be dealt with at the wastewater treatment plant.

Spencer also asked where the money is coming from to fund this project.

Long said primarily, Phase I will be funded with a CDBG and Phase II will be FDEPSRF grant funded.

“The remaining phases will be funded from FDEPSRF or CDBG, and we might be able to split up Phase 4 to get better funding,” said Long.


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