MINUTES OF MEETING
CORAL SPRINGS IMPROVEMENT DISTRICT
The regular meeting of the Board of Supervisors of the Coral Springs Improvement District was held Monday, May 15, 2000 at 4:05 P.M. in the District Office, 10300 N. W. 11 Manor, Coral Springs, Florida.
Present and constituting a quorum were:
Robert D. Fennell President
Karl Miller Vice President
Clint Churchill Secretary
Also present were:
Rhonda K. Archer Treasurer
Dennis Lyles Attorney
Donna Holiday Recording Secretary
John McKune Gee & Jenson
Roger Moore Engineer
Roy Gold Resident
FIRST ORDER OF BUSINESS Roll Call
Mr. Fennell called the meeting to order at 4:05 P.M. and Mr. Moyer called the roll and stated that all Board members were present.
SECOND ORDER OF BUSINESS Approval of the Minutes of the April 17, 2000 Meeting
Mr. Fennel stated that each Board member had received a copy of the minutes of the April 17, 2000 meeting and requested any additions, corrections or deletions.
There not being any,
Mr. Gold stated I am here today as the site coordinator for Broward Waterway and Cleanup. I have been the site coordinator for Coral Springs for the last five years. I was at a reception they had recently and they wanted me to give a plaque of honor to the Coral Springs Improvement District for the help you have given the Waterway Cleanup and my site specifically over the last five years. For the last five years, crews have participated with boats and staff to really make a difference in the water quality and I appreciate that. Nick Schooley has been especially instrumental by being at our meetings and being very helpful. I have copies of an article that appeared in which they mention the Water District by name. I appreciate the manpower and the funding that you have given, and Marine Industries Association of South Florida appreciates the work we do. This is one of the few sites in the western area, and it has been my pleasure to be leading in this clean up. They gave me the C-14 canal, but that is not enough. We went to every school, 13 schools that have water, 23 parks, over 50 sites in total, with 225 volunteers this year, which is the largest number of volunteers we have ever had for the waterway cleanup for our site. It is one of the largest sites, and we also won for the most unusual garbage, which is kind of unique. I will give you the plaque on that note. Thank you very much for your assistance. Someone brought in a wooden schooner replica with masts and sails and there was a little houseboat on the boat, and within the houseboat was a family of crickets chirping. They brought that after I had closed the site down, and I said, "This really seems unusual. I am going to have to take this down to headquarters." I took it in, and they said, "That is a really neat ship. Maybe that will win for most unusual garbage." Two minutes later, the crickets started, and they asked, "What is that noise?" You could literally look in the little houseboat windows and you could see the crickets, so that was a winner. It is the second time in five years we have won for the most unusual garbage. It is a great event, we have a tremendous turnout, and the City helps us as well. I don't want to take up too much of your time, but I really wanted to be here today to thank you as a Board. I appreciate the opportunity to be here and to thank you personally.
Mr. Fennell asked Mr. Gold, how many tons of garbage do you get out of the canals?
Mr. Gold responded the whole clean up is 72 or 73 tons. We had a 40 cubic yard dumpster for Coral Springs specifically, and we had people from the Utility Department of Coral Springs, bring out one of the backhoes, and knock the stuff down, because we fill it up with shopping carts, ping-pong tables, bowling balls, we have pulled motorcycles out, furniture, couches, everything that you could think of that someone would be foolish enough to throw away in the water, they have done it, but we are pretty happy with the results, because we have had a lot of volunteers.
Mr. Churchill asked how do you take all of it out? Do you have tow lines that you are dragging garbage up with?
Mr. Gold responded we actually have enough volunteers. We have a map of the city, and we pinpoint where we are going to send them. Then, if they happen to fill up their bags with garbage right at the site, they have no way to transport it back. They call us and Public Works has a truck that has been going around the city, picking up the garbage and bringing it back to us to fill up the dumpster. We have had real good luck with people. They want to contribute their time, it does make a difference. I don't get to go out and clean up myself anymore, I am the leader, just like you don't go out and turn on the water. The good news is, it makes a difference. Three years ago, we pulled a Chevy Blazer out of the canal, we have pulled out motorcycles, we have pulled out go carts, a lot of bad things, cans of propane gas, batteries from cars.
Mr. Moyer stated Mr. Gold has done a wonderful job in spearheading that. I remember when he called me and I actually thought it was more than five years ago. It seems like he has been doing this longer than five years, but he takes this to heart. The thing that is frustrating, from my perspective, is that Mr. Gold will be back here every year telling you the same stories, about the same stuff that goes into the canals every single year, the couches will be back next year, the shopping carts in abundance will be back, and that is really the frustration of this job. Mr. Gold deserves a lot of credit, because he does take this very seriously, and he does a great job.
Mr. Gold stated I will mention one thing I have done on behalf of your District and myself as a resident of Coral Springs. I wrote a letter to the City Commission, I will send you a copy, requesting two pieces of action from them: one was that at construction sites of new homes, if there is bordering water, that they surround it with fencing to prevent the garbage blowing into the canals. I have found from talking to people and to staff that this is a huge problem. The other issue is behind commercial sites, when they have their dumpsters. If they had a four foot high fence, that would stop most of the stuff that blows into the canals, and prevents issues like that which are ongoing and will never change. No matter what you do, when people put the garbage in those dumpsters, things will blow out of there, but when you put a fence up, it will stop a lot of it. I asked them in a letter forum, because I want to affect public policy, and I felt it would be better than me going up there. I speak in front of the Commission often, so I am hoping that this quiet diplomacy will help all of us.
Mr. Churchill stated there is another issue involved with this, not directly with the canals maybe, but it is very difficult in Coral Springs to get rid of toxic substances like paint, you talked about the gas cans, or paint cleaner, or oil. You have to take it to a place off Powerline Road to the disposal station that is only open on Saturdays, and I have a feeling that is why it is ending up in our regular trash or in the canals, because it is a major effort to dispose of it. There should be a transfer station in Coral Springs.
Mr. Gold responded I think you are right, and I think the City is the focus of money being spent. Home Depot moved out of Margate to Coral Springs, and they told me, "Our store is dead now." It is right up here at Atlantic and University. We really do generate and use a lot of chemicals to improve our lawns, our houses, our cars. It may be beneficial, but there are so many battles to fight, and I have done environmental things where I have saved forested land in Coral Springs, and I have done this waterway cleanup and I work in the educational field. The oil is a problem, I agree. I do thank you for your time.
THIRD ORDER OF BUSINESS Consideration of Resolution 2000-1 Amending the 1999 Budget
Mr. Moyer stated we are spending money improving Pump Stations, and basically what the amendment accomplishes is to move moneys from unallocated reserves into the Operating Account so we can continue the upgrade of the water pump systems. That is behind section three of your agenda. We are adding $195,170 to our Budget.
Ms. Archer stated the Board approved replacing the pumps at Pump Stations One and Two at last month's Board meeting, after we went through the first two pumps during the last hurricane season and replaced those on a short-order emergency basis. We had some inspections done on the remaining pumps since they were all about the same age. We were looking at those pumps and determining whether we should concentrate on those as well, and we found out that they are in as bad condition if not worse than the two pumps that failed last year. We did take bids and the Board authorized those bids and awarded those last month along with the engineering related to that, and some minor changes that would make the pumps last longer, like epoxy. Based on the Board's actions last month, we needed to reallocate some funds that we had set aside specifically for this purpose in our Sinking Reserve Fund to pay for those.
Mr. Fennell asked since we are talking about the funding, how are we doing with the pumps?
Mr. McKune responded they are in manufacture right now and the first one should be ready for installation within 30 days. One minor change will be the structural condition of the steel plate thimbles that go through the concrete wall will have to be re-manufactured. When the Contractor went in to make his measurements for his repairs, he noticed that there was some damage, specifically below the water line. We are going to have to do some welding of steel plate. I passed out estimates at the last Board meeting indicating that the approximate additional cost of those repairs would be $48,000.
Mr. Fennell stated I am losing track of where we are overall on how much money we have and how much money we are spending.
Ms. Archer asked specifically related to pumps? We have two pump stations. The two pumps we replaced last year cost $70,000 each. This year, we bid out and awarded five pumps, three of which are being replaced: one in Pump Station Number One, two in Pump Station Number Two, plus a new pump in one and two. We had the extra bay in each pump station. We received a permit from S.F.W.M.D. to allow us to put a pump in that bay, and even though we cannot run it simultaneously with the other pumps, it will be a backup. That leaves one pump during next year's Budget to be replaced in Pump Station Number Two, and that will give us four brand new pumps and engines. They are not brand new engines in all of them, but engines in the new ones in both pump stations. This year, the two replacement pumps which is pump and engine, totals $139,190, and that is where I got the figure of approximately $70,000 each. The two spare pumps at Pump Stations One and Two are the $179,410 each. That is $314,952. Three more replacement pumps came to $157,177. We have a change order pending that Mr. McKune spoke about that totals approximately $48,000 if we apply it to all of the pumps, so we are talking about spending about $520,129 between last year and this year with one more pump to go next year for approximately $60,000.
Mr. Fennell asked how much do we have in our Sinking Fund?
Ms. Archer responded enough. We have $619,000. I did an analysis for your Budget and I will get to that and run that down when we get there. We will use all of what we call the Renewal and Replacement Fund which is where we had $619,000 and we will end up next year with the total of $221,000 still remaining in our Engine Replacement Fund. We will still have $221,000 in that and I am recommending that over a period of the next 11 years, we build the Engine Replacement Fund up to the amount needed to replace the engines that we replaced eight years ago. I have prepared a Long-Term Capital Outlay Budget showing how that is going to work and how it affects our assessments over the next 11 to 12 years to keep the assessments at a level that funds that and in the final year we will have enough to replace those engines. There is enough in there to where if we lose one at a time we can start replacing them, but they have been good for about 20 years in the past, and they are only about seven or eight years old now.
Mr. Fennell asked are there any other questions?
Mr. Churchill asked are we allowed two or three pumps at each station at a time?
Mr. Moyer responded three at 150,000 gallons each.
Mr. Churchill asked is that adequate under any circumstances you can conceive of?
Mr. McKune responded I would think so, yes.
Mr. Moyer stated you have to be careful what you say in any circumstances. It is adequate under the 100 year storm to keep everybody's house above water. It is not for a 300 year storm.
Mr. McKune stated that is not strictly a flooding problem that would be caused by pump inadequacy. Then you would start getting more into the inadequacy of the entire system, street swales, drainage. The pumps themselves should handle it.
Mr. Fennell stated try to think of it like a bathtub. You have so long that you can fill it up, and the drain is so big that you can pull out, so they have a timing schedule for that. There are a lot of things that can go wrong. You have stressed pumps sometime, or you don't have an accurate weather forecast and suddenly this happens. I think the last time was in 1979 and we got 11 inches of rain overnight. It was not even a hurricane.
Mr. Moyer stated it was just a tropical depression that everyone predicted would bring nothing more than light showers.
Mr. Churchill stated I was not looking for guarantees, I was just trying to get a scenario in my mind.
Mr. Fennell asked Exhibit A is just moving around money, is that correct?
Mr. Moyer responded the money comes out of unallocated surplus, or what is shown there as Carry-Forward Surplus and we move it to a specific line item called Repair and Replacement.
Mr. Churchill stated I would like to congratulate the management for having the foresight to adequately fund the reserve that allows us to do this.
FOURTH ORDER OF BUSINESS Distribution of Proposed Budget
Mr. Moyer stated this starts a process. We are not asking you to adopt this Budget. We will schedule a future meeting for having a public hearing on this Budget, at which time we can discuss it further and not only adopt the budget, but we will also adopt the non ad valorem assessment that will appear on the tax rolls. You will have two months to think about it, to talk about it at your next meeting. Ms. Archer will make a presentation to identify what happens given the fact that we are going to start funding our Renewal And Replacement Account.
Ms. Archer stated I want to point out that the assessments are projected to increase from $46.76 per unit to $63.34 per unit, which is approximately a 35% increase, even though we are only talking about $26. The reason for that is because we have depleted the majority of the funds that we had set aside to replace our pumps and we need to continue to set aside funds to replace our engines in the future, and when I ran the schedule and looked at how many years it has been since we replaced the engines, and their projected life, that does cause us to increase the assessment to do that in a timely manner. In the past, we had Carry-Forward Surplus Funds in the Budget of approximately $151,000. We will only have $40,000 next year because we spent a lot of those funds on the new pumps. That being the case, the assessments have to go up. I think once we increase them to this level, we will be looking at this level every year for the next 10 to 12 years, but I think it is necessary for us to make the increase in order to have the funds available like we did the last time to replace those engines.
Mr. Moyer stated this year we anticipated having the $151,000 in Carry Forward Surplus that you don't have shown, next year we only show $40,000. When you look at the administrative costs, they are going up less than five percent, and even on the field operations that we budgeted $460,000 last year and we are estimating or asking for $519,000, so that is not a huge increase.
Ms. Archer stated a lot of the problem is because of the Carry Forward Surplus that we are not going to have next year, that we had last year.
Mr. Churchill asked how often is this $26 going to be assessed? Yearly or monthly?
Ms. Archer responded yearly and it will probably continue at that level from now on.
Mr. Moyer stated I think the residents get a great deal for $4 a month. That is what they have been paying for the maintenance of the canals and to keep their houses dry and that is a pretty good value. That will go up from $4 to $6 per month.
Mr. Fennell stated we had reduced this a couple of years ago by about 10 percent.
Ms. Archer responded yes, we did. After we paid off the bonds, we went through our canal program. In hindsight, we probably should have kept it up and continued to build up these funds for engines and pumps, and some work that needs to be done in bank maintenance.
Mr. Churchill asked what is bank maintenance?
Ms. Archer responded an example would be where you have the out fall canals with Australian Pines growing along them. They are getting so tall that they can blow down during a hurricane and block the waterways. If we have Carry Forward Surplus Funds next year, I am not going to ask you to reduce the assessments down from $63, I am going to suggest putting any Carry Forward Surplus Funds into the bank maintenance. I am looking at the $63 assessment for a long term.
Mr. Moyer stated my recollection is that before we paid the Bond we had assessments of $85 per year, so this is still substantially under what we have been paid prior to paying off the Bonds.
Mr. Fennell stated from general practice we saved enough money so that we can buy the pumps without having a Bond Issue, so that was good, but where we did have a problem was truly understanding the state of the equipment. We are going to have mainly new equipment from here on out, but there has to be some other item that goes forward that gives us a really good view of what the state of this equipment really is. I know we had divers down there, but somehow we missed it. There is something we are not catching, and this is not going to be just for my District, it is obviously going to be a problem for numerous other Districts. We are missing a preventive maintenance or diagnostic key. Since this equipment does not wear out very often, it is pretty easy to get into a mode of, "Well, it was okay last year, it is probably going to be okay this year, and 19 times out of 20 you are right, except for the one year you suddenly have two out of three pumps fail at a pump station.
Mr. Moyer stated in all the other Districts, we have done exactly what we did with C.S.I.D. and that is, they have built reserves for replacing those pumps, and I think you are to be credited that at least on Pump Station Number Two, we are doing it before it is necessary and we may have waited too long but we didn't know the useful life of that either. Based upon the diver's reports and everything else, the divers did not see the problem.
Mr. Fennell stated no, they did not. I suspect the divers probably are not trained to understand what they are looking at. That goes back to engineering. There is a science called maintenance and failure rates, and when I worked, we actually had people on staff in our Quality Department who did nothing but just figure out when things were going to fail, what the failure rate was going to be, how much we were actually going to have to pay to have them repaired. When I did that for electronics it was relatively new. The mechanical part of it is well developed. I am asking our Engineers to come back with a better inspection procedure, not just for us, but one that we could recommend to our sister Districts on how to investigate the pumps. I suspect that it is going to have something to do with aging. There will probably have to be some kind of functional test, actually opening it up once a year and measuring things you can measure. It is not something that unless you are skilled in that science you might recognize, but maybe we need to bring in someone to do that. From my own experience, there are no random failures for something that big. You have passed the critical parameters statistically. This is beyond maintenance, this is really a quality control function, and the problem is that we are going to replace all this equipment, and we are not going to have any significant problems for at least 10 years, maybe 15. But it will occur again, and somehow we have to build in to our system of yearly inspections, just this sort of thing, looking at these things, and it should not be based on age. There should be a recommended procedure. I know we have a recommended procedure every year for getting ready for the hurricane season. We need one that goes along with that, that inspects all these things in a detailed manner, and the inspection has got to be at a point that we can actually do something about it.
Mr. McKune stated it has pretty much been instituted now. Part of the new procedure will involve pulling each new pump every five years for a detailed inspection internally and externally to repair this new epoxy coating. At that time, when it goes to the shop, we can require that they do weld inspections and other things that normally would not be done, and as you indicate, probably the first two inspections will not indicate failure is imminent, but they will indicate rates of decay, rates of material loss, material thickness, and we will be able to forecast much better the actual minimum rate of failure and schedule some dollars to be available to replace them well before they are expected to fail.
Mr. Fennell stated a good point was brought up about bank maintenance. We need to take a little more scientific look at that. It should not be the accountants tipping us off to go look at the trees. It should be the other way, but they are right, the trees are growing bigger. There was a fund set up for that, but from an engineering and operational standpoint, we need to have some kind of decision making process that says these trees get so big, we have so many trees, and a wind could come by at 60 miles per hour and suddenly we have 50 trees in the water blocking the canal. North Springs took some action. We should have some reasonable procedure ourselves.
Mr. Churchill stated I see Australian Pines coming down along our canals. Is that us or the landowner next to it?
Mr. Moyer responded that is the issue you wrestle with. We have a City Ordinance that requires the property owner to maintain that canal bank, and that would include those trees. The problem is, like gun control, nobody enforces that provision, so the trees get to be 40 or 50 feet tall, then we have a hurricane and that is what the concern is, how proactive do we become? The other side of the equation is, you gentlemen are showing good business judgment, good fiduciary judgment by saying, we know it is going to be a problem, let us start taking out those trees. The reality is if we did nothing and let them fall into the canal, the Federal Government will pay to take out the trees. We have done that. We have made application to FEMA, and we have been reimbursed from FEMA for trees that have blown into the canals during major storm events. It is a question of how much of your taxpayers' money do you spend in lieu of FEMA money from the Federal Government? It is sort of a tightrope.
Mr. Fennell asked are we just deluding ourselves, that really a few trees in the water don't make any difference, there is no real problem? Where does the problem really occur? This was an academic problem 20 years ago when I moved into the District and the trees were 15 feet tall.
Mr. Churchill asked are you operating on the assumption that the trees will block the flow of water to the pump station?
Mr. Fennell stated if you get a tree that big, and it goes into the pump station, even though we have got grates up, or they could actually form a dam.
Mr. Moyer stated the right thing to do is to set up the program, spend the tax dollars we need to spend now, and when we see that we have an area that is critical, like just upstream of a pump station for example, those trees should come out. Needless to say, the further you get away from that pump station, the less critical those trees become.
Mr. Churchill stated I think the first thing we need to find out is where we have the particular problem with trees near main canals. I have seen a lot come down around Taravella High School
Ms. Archer stated that was Sunshine.
Mr. Fennell stated that is not actually our canal. That is a drainage canal from north of us.
Mr. Moyer stated that does not take your drainage. That is a Sunshine Canal. They spent a quarter of a million dollars to take down a mile and a quarter of trees. It is an expensive proposition.
Mr. Churchill stated we are just talking about a couple of types of trees, that constitute a problem. There is Australian Pine, but I cannot think of anything else.
Mr. Moyer responded people that plant Ficus trees on the sides of the canal banks think that Ficus has very deep roots, but the reality is that it is very shallow on the top of the ground and they grow into huge trees and they get blown over.
Ms. Archer stated in Sunshine, the rule was everything that was large enough to make it to the canal if it fell over, came out.
Mr. Moyer stated I think what you are suggesting is that we need to go back and inventory the problem areas that we have, which are not as severe as what Sunshine has.
Mr. Fennell stated we need to take a look at it. You may also come back and say the smart thing to do is just stretch a big chain across and catch things before they get to the pump.
Mr. Moyer stated each pump station has a trash rack, so you are not going to ingest anything in the impellers in theory. We don't need to do anything with the budget at this time.
Ms. Archer stated we give it to you 60 days before the public hearing, and I also have to send it to the local government authority 60 days before we adopt it.
Mr. Fennell asked what was your Capital Expense Budget? What page was that?
Ms. Archer responded around page 21 is where I start talking about the Engine Sinking Fund, and in order to replace the engines last year at the two pump stations, how much money we have in there, and I concluded with we need to budget $18,000 per year for the next 11 years, to total $416,000 required to replace all the engines.
FIFTH ORDER OF BUSINESS Discussion of Water and Wastewater Rates Reduction
Mr. Moyer stated Mr. McKune has provided a letter indicating that it may be premature for the District to think of any major rate reductions, given the infiltration problem that we recognized a month or two ago when we had a heavy rainfall event. Rather than reducing our rates, we should start placing those in a fund so we can do an infiltration study and start lining the lines in Ramblewood and Ramblewood South and Shadowood, which are clay, that were put in, in the early seventies.
Mr. Fennell stated that is $3.75 million.
Mr. Churchill asked is there anywhere in our system that would monitor flow from a particular area? Do we know where the excess is coming from?
Mr. Moyer responded yes. We read the engine times daily on each lift station and we know where the bad areas are. Given the number of houses, and the flow per house, we know how long they are supposed to run and we know how long they are running and it is a pretty good indicator. Part of the problem I think we are going to encounter in this activity is that we have infiltration that comes from our lines that have broken, but each individual house has a line that runs from the lateral to the house and each one of those lines is also subject to being broken, and each one will have a sewer clean out cap, which in many cases vanishes over time, and they end up getting a lot of infiltration, not from broken lines, but from broken sewer caps on individual houses. We are going to have to talk about a program on how to inspect for that and more importantly, how to correct that, because technically that is private property, that is the homeowner's responsibility.
Mr. Churchill stated I live in a condo, and we have 32 units on one water meter. We cannot pin down where water waste is coming from, except by removing those caps and see if water is flowing when no one is home, so we have a procedure for monitoring that. But we know where our sewer caps are.
Mr. Churchill stated on the section headed "Water and Wastewater Systems", we have allocated $300,000 for this Station Data Acquisition Telemetry Systems. What was that?
Mr. McKune responded that is $300,000 per year for two years for a total of $600,000. Mr. Moyer alluded to the way we measure the production of an individual lift station by reading the time meters manually and it takes one of our employees full time, just to drive around and acquire this information. This Lift Station Data Acquisition Telemetry System is called a SCATA system. It is basically an electronic set of components that can be installed at the lift stations that measure any number of parameters of operation of the station, for instance the rate at which the pumps are pumping, the level in the wet well, the pressure where you may have an alarm condition. It inputs it into the control panel, a radio system in the panel sends it remotely to a central station near the plant. If the central station requires of each of the lift stations out there, their particular status and the operators here, without having someone drive around, can immediately know the status of all the lift stations in C.S.I.D. and they will know information on much more than the operating parameter that Mr. Moyer mentioned which is the running time. It is a great way to get information. You can plot trends, and it will allow you to save money on preventive maintenance.
Mr. Moyer stated it also, with the right programming equipment, will permit you to operate those lift stations in a fashion where it will somewhat flow equalize into the plant. We talked about building a surge tank or putting the money into this type of system. If we do both, we will have the best of all worlds, you can control it coming into the plant, and if you have heavy flow, you can still go to the surge tank.
Mr. Churchill stated at $600,000 the question is not is it necessary or is it nice, because we are doing without it now. It appears to be a substantial amount of money in a two year period.
Mr. McKune responded is it necessary? Possibly not. Would it have helped? Yes. Mr. Moyer indicated that we were somewhat surprised by the amount of infiltration as a result of a recent heavy rainfall. If we had all of the data that this type of system could have provided over the last five years, I think we would have been able to see the trends in the rate of flows increasing at each of these stations, and it is very helpful.
Mr. Fennell stated you are talking about something that is about $15,000 per station, which is pricey for a radio transmitter, and you are going to need some kind of base station, and that will cost $25,000 to $30,000.
Mr. McKune stated the radio itself is not a great expense. What is expensive is to bring the contractor in who actually does the structural repairs at the station, to install those measuring devices that get the information to the radio.
Mr. Fennell asked given that we are going to have this really fancy $15,000 control at each point, what are we going to do with it? You can radio live data in, but then what does it really allow you to do? I know you said you can decide when to turn the pump stations on or off. What is the size of each station?
Mr. McKune responded it is relatively small. These things are, on average six feet in diameter, and 20 feet deep.
Mr. Fennell asked do we have to go out and clean these things out every once in a while?
Mr. McKune responded oh yes.
Mr. Churchill asked do we do that ourselves or do we hire a contractor?
Mr. Moyer responded we do that ourselves.
Mr. Fennell asked when do we do that? Every year or two years?
Mr. McKune responded it is a constant program, and there is a man here who spends most of his time removing individual pumps and bringing them back to the shop, repairing them, reworking them, and reinstalling them. It is an ongoing program.
Mr. Fennell stated given that they have been out there 20 or 25 years, there will come a point where we will have to replace all those.
Mr. McKune stated they are being replaced.
Mr. Fennell asked what do you do? Do you put a new tank in?
Mr. McKune responded the tank is concrete. You do not replace those. You replace the rotating mechanical parts.
Mr. Fennell stated if you have this electronic system, maybe there is something more you could be doing at these points, particularly involved with our odor problem. I don't know if pre treatment at these points would make it easier for things downstream, but that is the first point at which you actually have access to the wastewater, and that could make this plant's operation easier.
Mr. McKune stated there are systems in place, which have been used with mixed success.
Mr. Fennell stated I think we are willing to spend money on anything that we can prove in fact that has a cost-ratio benefit.
Mr. Moore stated I have been trying to get this in several different areas. In many cases in the Weston area, we did the exact same thing, the SCATA system has been bid and they are out probably about six months away down there. One of the things we always found was a problem in one of the staff who would visit the station once a day. Every sewer spill that we had to report to the agencies, usually occurred right after he visited that day. It was interesting, we would lose a phase and sewer would back up, and it would not be visited until an alarm went off and somebody happened to notice and call the emergency number. Somebody would hit something during construction with a back hoe and it was because of the once a day type thing. The other thing is, like in water lines, you can monitor all kinds of data in a lift station, not just necessarily sewer. With a small pressure gauge, you can monitor the hydrostatic pressure for all of your water lines. If you happened to have a water break in the area, you would get an alarm here at the site with no manpower involved. The information we will be able to get from this system is going to increase the response time tremendously to the public. I think we will be able to get it a lot cheaper than $15,000. Hopefully we can put out a bid, or however you want to set this up. There are a lot of good systems on the market, and there have been quite a few proven throughout Broward County and different areas. I think it is something that is going to be very beneficial. I am also hoping to put it together with some of the pumping stations. For example, I spoke with Nick, and this uses the same control system, so you divide the cost over more units. For example, we will find out if the pump is running, possibly the engine temperature, if the pump has sucked something up and the engine has quit running. That can set off an alarm or beep someone on call at that particular point in time. This may save a tremendous amount of manpower of people going out and checking things, because if there are three or four different Districts, running about eight to ten different pump stations, this monitoring device will allow us to monitor almost everything right at a desk or by a phone call or just a beeper. If the pump shuts down, he can right away get it turned back on. At the last rain, if we had this telemetry system in, we could have turned all the pump stations off here instead of sending guys out in the field to turn them off. If we have 45 stations, and we need to turn six or seven of them off to decrease the flow while we try to adjust it here, the surge tank is high, we could actually do it by flipping a switch right here in the plant, instead of sending people out to turn them off manually and then turning them back on here to adjust the flow.
Mr. Churchill stated that is the information we need to have to justify this. My concern was that two meetings ago, we were talking about reducing rates, and at this meeting, we are talking about not only not reducing rates, but increasing them by the amount of the assessment, and then you see $600,000 with no back up and we need that back up information to justify this, and it has to be real. With this pendulum swinging entirely the other way, which tends to happen when you start talking about rate reduction, there is always a reason not to do it.
Mr. Fennell stated if we are only collecting data twice a day, that would probably be a hard sell. On the other hand, I think that what you just told me, when that red light goes off on those things it means something is wrong, and if nobody notices it, that thing fills up and over spills. Now you are talking about something significant, which is an alarm system that tells us when a local overflow or a flood occurs on a street, and if we are only checking for that once a day, now you have essentially an operational feature that is important to all of us. I have seen some of those red lights, but I did not know what they meant, but yet it probably means the pump is bad or something.
Mr. Moyer stated there is a high water marker on these tanks, and that is when the light comes on. It can happen when there is nothing wrong with the pumps, but if we get a heavy rainfall, the inflow into that tank can cause the light to come on.
Mr. Fennell asked do the pumps go on and off automatically?
Mr. Miller asked how often has that been a problem in the past?
Mr. Moyer responded it happens to every utility, clearly, so I am not going to tell you it is not a problem, but I do not remember reports coming back from the field that it has been a major problem in this District.
Mr. Fennell stated their issue was that during a heavy rain, some areas had more infiltration than others, so that the water lines were getting more than they could handle, but by balancing the pumps they could have equalized it.
Mr. Churchill stated that is an excellent reason to do this. That is all I personally need to know.
Mr. Fennell stated that is the operational reason it makes us more efficient, especially if we are encountering different problems as we hit build out here, which is getting close to capacity of the systems. Those are the kinds of things that will win our hearts; greater operational cases, knocking down alarms, knocking down odors, but we have to clearly see the justification other than just the greater operational efficiency. This is exactly what I would really like to see us doing, anticipating ideas and problems beforehand and looking before a situation hits us and how we can go after it. My conclusion is that at this point, until we get further along as far as the waste and wastewater systems on making improvements to the systems, we are going to have to do this, but it also tells me that the proposal we had at one time to essentially buy out the group, at an essentially nominal or no replacement of systems was unrealistic and could have been a near disaster for us if we had actually done that. As proposed, at least by the bankers that came in, we would have gotten all this money, and we could have distributed it to the people, but six months or a year later, we find ourselves having to replace major systems and we would have had to double or increase significantly the taxes, so that soft money that is supposedly there to be garnered, is not really there. When they talk about operational efficiencies, but to be honest, they were bankers. Their operational efficiency is saying, "Mr. Moyer, we want this amount of money per year. You do it, we don't care." I don't think that actually works. It also makes us appear not to be the gem of value that we had appeared to be at first. The fact is that we have a 20 to 25 year old system, we are essentially having to rebuild substantial parts of it. It really does require a local Board to be sensitive to these needs, and not trade this off for something else. My conclusion out of this is that we are better off being a local Board, if we can actually fund this ourselves, doing it and we probably don't really have anything I can see as being beneficial to a larger group.
Mr. Moyer stated keep in mind that part of that discussion was based upon the legislation out there which may end up coming back again next year, but we will just play that out and see what happens at that point in time.
Mr. Fennell stated yes, but what it looks like to me is that we have a 25 year old system that needs to be rebuilt.
Mr. Moyer stated it is not worth any further discussion, and I agree with your conclusion.
Mr. Miller stated it brings up what I have brought up before, with all due respect to our current Engineering firm, we spend large sums of money without second opinions. It appears to me that it might be something to look at to have an independent engineering firm come in and just do an overview before we launch into some of these things. Even if it costs $15,000, based on the amount we are being asked to spend, sometimes I think that objectivity or that independence might be a good thing to have.
Mr. Fennell stated you have a point. I think what was missing for a number of years was long-term capital planning. The reason it was missing is because we were in that lovely period where you have built the system, and nothing else needs to be built for another 10 or 15 years, and it is an operational system, but you are no longer in the capital planning stage, you no longer are in the stage where you have to have replacements. There was a lull. Maybe we lulled ourselves into complacency.
Mr. Churchill asked do we need to do anything with this in terms of motion?
Mr. Fennell responded no, I just think that it should all be made part of the record. Do we have to get back to anybody, the one bank group, or the City? This is a classic case of A versus B. Proposal A would have put us in a position where frankly, I don't know that we would have been able to respond in the same kind of capital thinking, although the money they were going to give us would have had to have been paid for with Bonds.
Mr. Moyer responded yes, they would have kept your rates where they were, at the $45 level currently, and then you would have had a pool of money that they estimated at $11 or $12 million and we could have used some of that for this.
Mr. Fennell stated now we are essentially saving ourselves the fees on those Bonds by financing this ourselves.
Mr. Moyer responded that is correct, and the issue becomes ripe again in 2003 or 2004 or 2005 when we get out there and we implement most of that program.
Mr. Fennell stated the other issue would have been, if the Board had changed, could we have responded as quickly as we have to the needs as we have seen them come up. I don't know if that would have occurred. From what I know about management and response times of the systems, the response time would have been cut by at least four X, and I don't think we would have been able to respond. The conclusion I come to is that we should strive to keep the group as it is, try to keep local control. The only time I can see us doing anything is if there is substantial case where we could get a better deal processing water or something of that sort, but from what I saw of Coral Springs itself, it pays higher to process its wastewater than we do and there is a 10 percent add-on fee for the wastewater and water system which just goes to other points in the city. I got that from reading the Budget.
SIXTH ORDER OF BUSINESS Staff Reports
Mr. Lyles stated the 23 homeowners who live next door to this plant, who were suing their original home builder, Centex Rooney for a number of years, I think you are all familiar with that litigation and we were involved in that, merely as potential witnesses and as record keepers for certain things, at least in the past. Apparently they have reached a settlement. Centex has agreed to pay them a sum of money, the amount of which we do not know at this point, in return for which, they are all assigning their individual causes of action to Centex to bring against this District. We have now been notified under the Statute for suing government agencies, that Centex intends to sue us for the damages and for the attorney's fees represented by all of those claims for whatever amounts Centex has paid, and moreover, there are eight additional property owners who were not part of the original litigation with the 23 present and former homeowners who also have assigned their claims, undoubtedly for some sort of payment or fee from Centex, so they are going to be coming after us on behalf of those eight homeowners as well. They maintain that our violations processed by Broward County Department of Natural Resource Protection at the time are evidence of negligence on our part, that we emanated odors from this plant that were prohibited by the Broward County Code and you may recall all the facts and circumstances surrounding that, and they have initially offered to resolve all these claims in the amount of $1.6 million, which is less than what they will demonstrate has been paid. We just received this at the beginning of the month. We turned in the manager's office this entire matter over to our insurance carrier for an evaluation. Under Florida law, a District such as this one has six months to evaluate such a claim to make a decision as to whether or not it wants to try to negotiate the claim, settle the claim, fight the claim, or some other alternative. We will work with the insurance carrier and hope that they will do their own analysis of what the exposure is and what the coverage issues are and come back to the Board. I really don't want to give a lot of information about the matter at this very early stage, partly because we don't have all the information, and partly because as you know, the records of these meetings are all public records, and if we get into litigation, I prefer that we have discussions regarding the issues and strategies in a closed door session, which we would be entitled to do. Of course, naturally, any of you who would like an individual briefing or a question and answer period, especially Mr. Churchill who was not on the Board at the time all this was going on back in 1996 and early 1997, that is perfectly acceptable. I wanted to make you aware that we have received formal written notice of this claim from Centex through its attorneys, we have turned it over to our insurance carrier, who will closely monitor everything that is happening.
Mr. Fennell asked did Centex make this agreement or was it a Court agreement, or exactly what happened?
Mr. Lyles responded we don't know yet, and they don't have to tell us, but I suspect that they reached some sort of settlement with these homeowners in return for which the claims were assigned to Centex. The original suit against Centex was primarily based upon the fact that Centex and its agents fraudulently misrepresented the nature of this facility. They said it was a water plant, but did not mention that it was also a wastewater plant, or omitted it entirely, or engaged in a conspiracy with other entities, such as title companies to conceal all of this from prospective homeowners, and in fact, when asked questions about it, lied about it. That was the original lawsuit. As part of the original lawsuit, homeowners made claims along these lines, "because of the fumes and the noxious odors from the plant, I have suffered headaches, I have suffered nausea, I have suffered emotional distress, my property is worth less, I cannot sleep at night, I am worried about the effect in the future of the settlement ponds at the facility that were discontinued a long time ago on my children", they made those sorts of claims against Centex to bolster their claim that this was a serious misrepresentation on Centex's part. Now what has happened is that they have, in effect, joined forces to come after us for all of the money involved in this.
Mr. Fennell asked they were supposed to pay the people money, but did they keep the people's money and use it against us?
Mr. Lyles responded I think they probably agreed to pay the people some of the money in return for which the people said, "I am assigning you my claims against C.S.I.D. Centex, you and your attorneys go and pursue it." That is in addition to the third party claim that Centex would have based upon it paying out money to these claims for what they claim is the District's negligence and failure to comply with Broward County Codes.
Mr. Churchill stated we will await developments on it.
Mr. Lyles stated I think we needed to turn it over to our insurance carrier for them to handle it on behalf of the District, and the initial demand as I said is for $1.6 million. We will pay very close attention to this and keep you apprised.
1. Monthly Water & Sewer Charts
Mr. McKune stated as you know, some years ago we had an arrangement with Zyme-Tech to provide the initial odor control system that has been chugging away out there on all these plants. There was subsequently some problem or two with Zyme-Tech. I believe Zyme-Tech has gone out of business, is that correct?
Mr. Lyles responded they have gone into bankruptcy.
Mr. Fennell asked didn't we end up paying them some kind of settlement?
Mr. Lyles responded actually we did not pay them a settlement. During the term of the agreement with Zyme-Tech to purchase the chemicals from them, our plant operator decided to solicit quotes for a lower price to try to save money from another supplier. That was a violation of our terms of purchase agreement with Zyme-Tech. We quantified how much he bought elsewhere and figured out how many gallons of product to buy from Zyme-Tech to make them whole and we extended the term of the contract past its original expiration date and bought that increment of chemicals from Zyme-Tech that we would have purchased prior to the contract expiration to make them whole. So we actually did not pay them a settlement of any money, we just bought chemicals from them in accordance with the contract that we had.
Mr. Churchill asked is this a proposal to switch suppliers?
Mr. McKune responded not really. At the present time there is an organization by the name of Personal Support Services, which is supplying the current chemical at a competitive rate, who is familiar with this equipment and who, upon occasion will repair the equipment when it stops running. It is not equipment that he provided and the original maintenance that Zyme-Tech was to have performed has not been performed on their equipment and there are a lot of components out there, fans, blowers, diffusers, etc. that are not operating up to specification. This particular system that exists today is not the most efficient system that you can now get. It was state-of-the-art at the time. There is a system that could be provided now, that would replace those inoperative portions of the current system for the capital cost, the installed cost as indicated in this summary letter. I have included the brief, one page proposal from Personal Support Services to provide these services to each of those main subsystems at the plant. You can see that the average cost is a little over $2,000 per location, and if we include not only the four locations at the Wastewater Plant, but also the fifth one, which is the Water Treatment Unit, it would be $2,500.40. You can see that the total cost of installing the new system would be $11,060. This system would represent a pressurized system with new small diameter pressurized piping going to all of the discharge points, with a fogging type of nozzle located around the odor generation areas, much more effective smaller aerosol mist disbursement system, without trying to rely on a large diameter perforated pipe to transfer this solution around these tanks. It is a much more efficient system. This particular individual can give us the best price, but that is just the opinion of myself and staff. This system can certainly be put out to bid, but I do not believe we would save any money on it, as this summary indicates, and my recommendation and also the recommendation of staff is that we keep this as our sole source item and proceed with this particular upgrade. This is something that could be accomplished fairly rapidly as most of the items of equipment are off the shelf.
Mr. Fennell asked how soon could you have it in?
Mr. McKune responded within 30 days.
Mr. Miller asked how long ago did we put Zyme-Tech equipment out there?
Mr. Moyer responded 1996 or 1997.
Mr. Miller asked what was the expected life span of that equipment? I presume it was more than four years.
Mr. McKune responded normally with equipment like that, you would be lucky to get 10 years, if you maintain it.
Mr. Moyer stated it is a very corrosive environment.
Mr. McKune stated that would involve replacement, as needed of some of the various component parts.
Mr. Fennell asked does this replace the entire Zyme-Tech system?
Mr. McKune responded it replaces their major mechanical components, yes.
Mr. Fennell asked is it built on something that was already in there? Because I know that Zyme-Tech system was originally much more than this. It was $100,000 or $200,000, I thought.
Mr. Churchill asked to what level will this return the system?
Mr. McKune responded it will be as effective if not more so than Zyme-Tech's original system.
Mr. Churchill asked will it bring it back up to an anticipated life of 10 years?
Mr. McKune responded yes, if the system is subsequently maintained.
Mr. Fennell asked do we have the capability of maintaining it ourselves?
Mr. McKune responded you do if you have the right personnel, and if they are familiar with the equipment, but part of the price is the trade-off on equipment maintenance versus cost of chemical per gallon basis. It is like any other contract, it is hard to separate.
Mr. Fennell stated $11,000 is not too much, but it looks like we are tied into Personal Support Services, who provides us preventative maintenance, and therefore we are also buying their chemicals.
Mr. McKune responded there is no time period where you are locked in to buy the chemicals.
Mr. Fennell stated before we boxed ourselves into a buying contract with Zyme-Tech, we are tying ourselves into a service that requires some kind of trained personnel to do, so we no longer have the personnel, and Personal Support Services comes in and they do it. That is smart business on their part, but it also tends to tie us in to one person for chemicals.
Mr. McKune this equipment is not that complicated. It will not preclude us from taking the system over.
Mr. Fennell asked who are we currently buying the chemicals from?
Mr. McKune responded from this gentleman, so it would be a continuation of a product we are currently using, in a more efficient system.
Mr. Moyer stated the risk you always run with these types of operations is that there is no guarantee that this company is not going to go out of business in two years, either. These are small supply companies.
Mr. Churchill stated unless I am missing something there is little downside on this. It looks like this $11,000 on a 10 year life of the original equipment constitutes normal maintenance, so I don't see a downside. We are going to buy the supplies from somebody, and we are not tied in to these people, we can switch suppliers any time we want.
Mr. McKune responded that is correct. If he leaves town, we can buy odor control chemical from whomever we like.
Mr. Fennell stated I was giving the negative point, but the positive spin on something like that we have a supplier working hand in hand with us on improving the system. He is guaranteeing himself, but he is becoming more useful by doing it.
Mr. Miller asked is the system still operating at an acceptable level? It may not be at the level that it was when it was initially put in, but is it still operational?
Mr. Moyer responded yes.
Mr. Fennell asked we don't always use it, though, or are we using it now?
Mr. McKune responded we do not always use it at the water plant side, but we do always use it in the higher odor generation areas.
Mr. Churchill asked did we have anything in the water treatment side before?
Mr. McKune responded it was installed but it did not work that long. It does not need to be run constantly at the water plant. That is left up to operator's judgment based on wind direction, humidity levels, and other factors.
Mr. Fennell asked do we still have the other system that injects the chemicals into it before it gets in to the surge tank?
Mr. McKune responded the odor floss did not seem to do that much and that was also a very expensive chemicals supply system. We have stopped using that, and we have not noticed any increase in odor. It does save the generation of a lot of additional solids. That is one thing the odor floss does, causes the production of additional solids, which is an expensive proposition to handle.
Mr. Fennell stated my own opinion is that it has always been our goal to stay ahead of the game as far as preventing odors in any way we can. I would think that we would have a system where we could even go back to the odor floss system or this system or both on a quick response. I think it is very important that we stay proactive and do the best job we can on this odor issue.
Mr. Moyer stated Mr. Lyles brings up a good point, and that is that this does not appear to be an emergency since we are using the Zyme-Tech system currently with a chemical. The limit under the Statute is $4,000/$5,000/$4,000. It really is not a sole source, nor would it be an emergency situation.
Mr. McKune stated I consider it to be sole source, when I factor in the cost.
Mr. Lyles stated those are mutually exclusive ideas, sole source has no regard to cost. I realize it is a relatively small amount of money. I was struggling, sitting here looking at your back-up materials trying to carve out the capital. We are already in an agreement with these people. They are providing us with chemicals, and a certain amount of maintenance from time to time, or is it just chemicals?
Mr. McKune responded just chemicals.
Mr. Lyles stated probably the more expensive part of what they provide is the chemicals, but we have a modification to our combined plant system, that totals over $11,000, so I think that unfortunately, under the Special Act that the District operates under, it has to be bid. If you put two notices out and it won't slow it down to a significant extent, but I also. having just given you the report that I gave you about this entire issue, would feel better if we did it that way.
Mr. Fennell stated let's examine the urgency of the situation some more. First of all, if this were January I think I would agree, but frankly, we did not really have a spring. The temperatures are already 85 to 90 degrees. We know from the customer's standpoint that a lot of our conditions occur during this time of year. It is mid-May, soon to be June. Frankly, the longest day of the year is just a month away. By the time we go through this process, bid it out and get it done, that could be 90 days. That could very easily be September. If we could bid the process and have the work done in a month, I would agree that the time frame is fine, but if it is going to take three months, then I think we are in an emergency condition. We need to keep this equipment in prime condition during the summer.
Mr. Churchill stated there is no work to be done, I think is the point.
Mr. Fennell stated there is the maintenance that has to be done.
Mr. Churchill stated I assumed by looking at this that what needed to be done was mainly maintenance work. The Zyme-Tech system that we have is currently working, is that correct? It is not down.
Mr. McKune responded it is working. It is not working very effectively. This system, if we were to install it, would replace all the piping, which is a considerable amount of effort, and it would also replace the fans.
Mr. Churchill stated what I am approaching is whether this is indeed an emergency or not.
Mr. Fennell stated the effectiveness that we are at now, versus the effectiveness that you are going to go to, you will to have to express that to us in a percentage. Are we at 30 percent effectiveness now, or are we at 40 percent and we are going to go to 90 percent?
Mr. McKune responded I would say that we are going to double the effectiveness.
Mr. Fennell stated that means we are less than 50 percent effective.
Mr. McKune stated the system at the water plant is not working at all.
Mr. Lyles stated for the record, I don't think the Engineer agreed that we are only 50 percent effective. We are within the range of acceptable and normal for purposes of the regulations that we operate under. What the Engineer is coming to you with is a proposal to go above those requirements and it will, in effect, be over 100 percent. We will more than double our effectiveness. We are, right now, within the law, within the regulations set forth by Broward County Department of Planning and Environmental Protection, which is the successor agency to the D.N.R.P. We are operating effectively and the plant is running properly. We see an opportunity to improve on that with new technology that was not available to us three or four years ago when we authorized the purchase of the Zyme-Tech system.
Mr. Fennell stated in that case, I think we should go ahead and do this right now.
Mr. Churchill stated I don't know if your statement is as I heard it. We are not talking about improving beyond Zyme-Tech's system. We are talking about bringing the Zyme-Tech system up to snuff.
Mr. Lyles stated we are going beyond the Zyme-Tech system.
Mr. Fennell stated I think we need to do this. I know we are meeting Federal Standards and all that, but I believe we should be doing everything possible as soon as we can for the benefit of the people around us.
Mr. Lyles stated you will get no quarrel from the staff on that.
Mr. Fennell stated I think it is important that we do that.
Mr. Churchill stated my opinion is that we have to take Counsel's suggestion under serious debate. Is it in violation of our call?
Mr. Fennell stated your call is whether or not it is important enough as an emergency to get this thing up and running.
Mr. Churchill stated if it wasn't an emergency yesterday, it is not an emergency today.
Mr. Moyer asked Mr. Lyles, can we delegate and award to the Chairman under certain parameters, such that if we bid this and it comes in under $15,000, that staff or the Chairman can award the contract like a Delegated Bond, based on the Engineer's recommendation? Then we can get it out into the newspaper Wednesday of this week, put it out for two weeks, get it back in three weeks and we are done with it.
Mr. Lyles stated we are only talking about a short period of time to get the bids out and get the responses back. I don't know that you can bid it. How long do you intend to give people to respond to notice of bids that you put out?
Mr. McKune stated the minimum time is generally two weeks.
Mr. Lyles stated it takes two weeks to do it, and it takes two weeks to get the bids, so at your next meeting you would be ready to sign a contract to do business and no questions can be raised as to whether you followed the Act. I don't really think it can be done any quicker than that anyway.
Mr. McKune stated then it will be touch and go to make it go that quickly, for the simple reason that if you bid the system, I have to be able to give them something to bid on. We have no drawings, we have no specifications for the system, because we have simply been working with the current technician, so it is going to take me more than between now and Wednesday to get all this ready.
Mr. Moyer stated I would suggest that because there are a variety of systems I think if you simply put out a request for bid for proposals to analyze the C.S.I.D. system and to provide a cost to upgrade the system. I understand that it is not very specific, but then you let companies come out and look at it, and maybe have a mandatory pre-bid meeting for a week or 10 days from now. Have them come out and meet with them, say, "Here is what we have now, you come back and tell us how we can make it better, and give us a cost."
Mr. McKune stated it would definitely do it on a performance specification basis.
Mr. Lyles asked is there some part of this five component subsystem proposal that is more critical than other parts? For instance, is the surge tank a bigger deal than plant A & B, is Plant A & B a bigger deal than Plant C & D? Is there one particular part of this that will result in some appreciable increase in performance?
Mr. McKune responded yes the headworks is critical.
Mr. Lyles stated that is under the $4,000 limit, so I think that because of the timing and the criticality of the seasonal changes, you could do those portions of the project and get some benefit, and then do the Engineering and get some proposals that other contractors might come up with.
Mr. Moyer stated Plant C & D which are the closest to our neighbors, when added to the $2,100 will still be under the $4,000 limit.
Mr. Lyles stated I think you could do those portions of the project and get some benefit and then do the engineering review of the proposals that other contractors might come up with and see how that works.
Mr. Fennell stated we have gone forward with a number of projects, but they are not here yet. For instance, we want to do an additional wastewater processing tank, but it is not done yet, and I am concerned that we may have tanks that go down that have to be repaired very quickly, and we need to have the best odor control system there as soon as possible. I see this kind of like in the same condition as pro-active maintenance, like I saw the pumps, which is, there is a condition where you have to look forward to possible conditions that could occur and you have to take the steps now. It is too late if an emergency rises. I see it as that kind of case that we don't have an odor control problem today, but I don't want to wait for an emergency. I think that is too late. I want to do it now, before there is a problem. I don't how that legally comes out, but it is like replacing an engine before it fails. I see that as a prudent thing to do, not as it fails. I frankly see this as an important issue for us. There are a couple of things that make an emergency. One is, is it really important or not and two, did it happen. The most important decision is how important is it? How important is odor control? It is extremely important. We do everything we can in this District to control odors and to think of ways that will actually prevent problems from happening. I don't want us to respond to problems, I want us to anticipate them and be there and the only way you can do that is to be pro-active and take the action you need to at the right time. So I see this as something that needs to be done now.
Mr. Miller asked how long has the system been operating so far? I am sure this did not happen just within the last week. How long has that been?
Mr. McKune responded months.
Mr. Miller stated personally, I feel we have to put the entire amount out to bid.
Mr. Fennell asked how do we declare whether or not it is an emergency?
Mr. Lyles responded that is a rhetorical question, and what difference does that make? We have had a couple of emergencies over the years and we have done what we needed to do to get everything operating, but the sad fact is this old piece of legislation that we are operating under does not really make a good provision for that, and I think we have done some things on an emergency basis, where there was an acute problem that was going to result in a loss of property or money or both to the District or to the residents and we dealt with that situation kind of as they have arisen. This one does not seem to be rising to that level, and then again I just heard about this as the documents were passed out, so I have not really had an opportunity to think of alternatives. The only alternative I can propose is, if our employees buy the equipment and install it themselves, then the $4,000 cap does not really apply, because that applies to a contract for construction or modification or maintenance of one of our facilities. We have some ability through our own resources, to buy what we need and install it. That may be one way to get around it, because at that point we are performing maintenance on our own facilities with the parts and equipment that we purchased. That is the only thing I can see. If you have a contract for someone else to come in and do it, I still feel like we need to bid.
Mr. Moyer stated we are going to do one of two things. We are going to look to see if we can purchase the equipment and stay within the bid limits of $4,000 and have District Staff install the equipment and possibly have the gentleman that is selling this stuff to us serve as a consultant as we install it. If that is feasible, we will do it. If we determine that it is not feasible, then I would ask the Board to authorize us to go ahead and bid it, and make every effort to get it back to us next month.
2. Update on Construction
Mr. McKune stated on Plants A & B, which are those that are currently undergoing which I will call the emergency renovation, Plant A has been successfully renovated, it has been on-line for approximately one week and it is doing an excellent job. Plant B has been down for the past week and we anticipate it going back on-line at the end of this week. By that time we will be out to bid for Plant E, which is the provisional plant. I might add that the County Regulatory Agency representatives were out here last week, and as I understand it, they were very pleased with what they saw, so we are actually making some progress and doing it more rapidly than they thought we would.
Mr. Churchill stated last meeting Ms. Archer had met with the Environmental Protection people who had expressed a concern about us anticipating an odor emission and we did not get any problem with that and we did not get any letters from people.
Ms. Archer stated we sent out a letter and from what I understood, we did not get any calls regarding odors over that period of time that the plant was down, and we did ask for their indulgence and patience.
Mr. Churchill stated my first order was to make the inquiry I just made as to whether we had any problems during the renovations of A & B and I just have to say well done to all of you. Ms. Archer's office for the way they anticipated problems and to the Board for the way you had it done. The question I had maybe Mr. McKune can address. In section six, we have a chart on the third page in which compares wastewater treatment and rainfall, and if I am reading it right, it does not show a corollary between high rainfall and wastewater treatment which is the premise that we are operating under based on anticipating need to reline sewers. For example, in April of 2000, we are showing about a 2.5 inch rainfall, and the wastewater treatment appears almost level with October of 1999, where we had 20 inches.
Mr. Fennell stated I think you need to look at it the other way. If rainfall is low, water production and wastewater production are near equal.
Mr. Churchill stated no, we are talking about the influx through broken sewers which should have a direct correlation between head pressure and rainfall.
Mr. Moyer stated the light colored bar is wastewater. The dark colored bar is water plant, so if you go back to June and you look at June where we had a lot of rain in June, you can see the spike in wastewater exceeds the amount of water we pumped out, which means we are returning more water to the plant than what we are producing.
Mr. Churchill stated but we are returning exactly the same amount of water as we returned in April of this year,
Mr. Moyer responded that is because it has been pretty dry.
Mr. Churchill stated okay, so we pumped out less water. What I am getting from this is we are not processing any more waste, so why does it constitute an emergency, unless it was an emergency both times?
Mr. Moyer asked do you mean for what we just talked about? I think we concluded that we could not justify it as an emergency.
Mr. Churchill stated not on the equipment, that is not what I am talking about. I am looking at April of 2000, and June of 1999. The water coming back in to the plant for treatment is almost the same. The water going out is significantly less in June. The difference obviously is in rainfall. I guess I just proved the point.
Mr. Fennell stated I think one of the issues that was brought up was the pipes are buried below water level anyway and we are saying that if it cracks, why would we not see a bigger difference still between water out and water in?
Mr. Moyer responded part of that infiltration is coming from sewer cleanouts above the water level.
Mr. McKune stated if there were no infiltrations into the sewer systems at all, and the systems were as good as they were when they were installed, your wastewater plant line would be considerably below the water plant output line by about 85 to 90 percent. Even on good months we are above.
Mr. Churchill stated in section eight, I noticed that we had $105,000 transaction with Solomon Smith-Barney that was reversed. What did we do with Solomon Smith-Barney? We had a $105,000 expenditure and then it was reversed. I guess my question was, do we deal in Bonds?
Ms. Archer responded not with Solomon Smith-Barney. I will check. The good news is it was reversed. Under Manager's Report, I have two things: because we are in a drought, and production is low in our plants compared to what we are flowing, I would like to have the Board declare the District to be in a Phase I water shortage and impose restrictions on watering outside the house, and we will also reduce the pressures that we operate under at the plant, so that we are putting less pressure through our lines, which cuts down on some of the use, but it is still within what is required.
In addition to that, we have an Interconnect with the City for emergencies, but we have never had a formal agreement with the City to use that interconnect. In North springs, we have had to open that interconnect on the weekends, because of the high flows on the weekends and the City wanted us to enter into an agreement for the opening and closing of that interconnect in an emergency, and I would like to get the Board to authorize us to go ahead and proceed to enter into a negotiated agreement with the City for that interconnect on this side, and basically, I think we drafted that after the one we sent to them that we had entered into with the City of Tamarac to the south, and use that as a form of the agreement that we were working on to the north. I am asking you to do those two things, declare a Phase I water shortage and authorize me to send out this letter I have distributed to everybody. It shows, based upon the addresses, what hours for watering. I think I will add one sentence to this letter though, that says that this does include irrigation off of the canal because the big problem is that we have received about 500 phone calls at the North Springs plant asking that one question. The letter does not say it applies to someone who waters off of the canal, and it does.
Mr. Miller asked can you send a copy to the forum and see if they can mention it?
Mr. Fennell stated I think it needs to be more clear to specify that it applies even if they are using well water or canal water.
Ms. Archer stated it still affects the water table, and we are asking everyone to conserve.
Mr. Fennell asked has the water table dropped? It is dry on the surface, but do we measure the water table in some way?
Mr. McKune responded we measure the canal levels and we can, just by surface observation of lake levels, see that they are down. If you just drive around and look at canal and lake levels, they are down.
Mr. Churchill asked how will we publicize this?
Ms. Archer responded we will send letters out to all the residents., The language in the letter comes straight out of S.F.W.M.D.'s Phase I water shortage procedures.
Mr. Miller asked there is no penalty if they don't comply, is there?
Ms. Archer responded no, I don't tell them in the letter that it is voluntary, but Phase I is voluntary.
Ms. Archer stated Mr. Lyles has put together the form of the agreement to be used with the City. They are putting that on the Agenda for tomorrow night for consideration for the North Springs District, and we would like to get the Board to authorize us to go ahead and work with the City to get it in place for our District as well. What happened in North Springs was that they would not let us open the interconnect in an emergency and I did not want C.S.I.D. to get in that position without having a formal agreement and they don't want to honor the handshake anymore.
Mr. Fennell asked can water flow either way and do we have some kind of a rate that we charge each other?
Ms. Archer responded yes it can flow either way.
Mr. Lyles responded it is 1.525 per 1,000 gallons times their base rate. It is a 25 percent surcharge on their base rate.
Ms. Archer stated they are required under their Bond documents to charge that.
Mr. Churchill asked would it be reciprocal if they were to purchase from us?
Mr. Fennell asked what is the likelihood of the emergency we were just talking about? What kind of shape are they in?
Ms. Archer responded they have twice the capacity they need.
Mr. Fennell asked are we in the process of getting some wells ourselves? How is that going?
Mr. McKune responded slower than I had hoped. Mr. Moore and I are going out hopefully tomorrow and finalize two revised locations in the city park and I would say within 30 days they will be out to bid and installed before it gets too dry.
There not being any, the next item followed.
SEVENTH ORDER OF BUSINESS Supervisor's Requests and Audience Comments
There not being any, the next item followed.
EIGHTH ORDER OF BUSINESS Approval of Invoices
Clint Churchill Robert Fennell