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March 16, 2017 Minutes

The Telford Borough Authority Meeting held this date was called to order at 6:00 p.m. by Secretary/Treasurer John Harrell, with the following members in attendance: David Musselman and Robert Nice. Also present were Manager Mark Fournier, Finance Director Craig Davies, Public Works Director Gary Yoder, Solicitor Mark Weand, Engineer Patrick DiGangi, and Recording Secretary Megan McShane. Abram Diehl and Timothy Hagey were absent.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES: Minutes of the February 16, 2017 Authority meeting were approved unanimously (3-0) by a Nice/Musselman motion.

COMMENTS FROM AUDIENCE: There were no comments from the audience.

DISCUSSION ITEMS:

1.         WWTF Centrifuge Project Update

Manager Mark Fournier reported that per the direction of the Board, the staff took another month to investigate purchasing options for a new or used centrifuge, including a conventional loan or bond financing. He presented spreadsheets showing what the operating costs and depreciation costs would be for both a new and used centrifuge, what the cost of depreciation for this project and potential rate increases could be if TBA extends their current debt to 2024, and what financing options Concord Public Finance provided to TBA. Mr. Fournier explained that the information only shows what the depreciation would be for the centrifuge purchase; it doesn’t include the regular depreciation TBA shows in the annual budget or any water expenses.

Mr. Fournier said that they determined that the operating costs of the WWTF really won’t change with this purchase, since the current equipment is old and energy inefficient. The staff also determined that it would cost $156,000 more for a new centrifuge, but there would be no difference in the impact on TBA customers’ sewer rate if TBA purchases a new or used centrifuge. He added that the cost would not be enough to warrant bond financing, and that the interest on a loan should be in the 2.75% range.

Mr. Fournier explained that 31.6% of the cost would be paid for by Franconia Township, per the current Agreement that FSA has with TBA. Mr. Fournier added that the TBA Board would need to have a discussion about deviating from the current Agreement with FSA to possibly set up a payment plan for the centrifuge purchase. Board member Robert Nice informed the Board that FSA discussed the centrifuge purchase at their most recent meeting, and Mr. Nice said they may ask TBA for a payment plan with a 5-year term.

Mr. Fournier’s recommendation to the Board is to purchase a new centrifuge. Board member John Harrell asked if the costs of borrowing listed in the new and used equipment cost analyses are set, and Mr. Fournier confirmed that yes, they are estimated by the various consultants. Mr. Harrell then asked Engineer Patrick DiGangi if he is confident with the equipment and installation costs listed in both of these analyses, and Mr. DiGangi confirmed that he is confident with those numbers.

Mr. Nice suggested that perhaps TBA and FSA could contact Ron Ely at Styer Associates to prepare wording for the revised payment agreement; Mr. Nice suggested that both municipalities could split Styer’s cost for this task.

Mr. Nice stated that he is unsure as to how Franconia Township will be able to show this on their financial statements without listing the centrifuge purchase as an asset; Mr. Fournier reiterated that Franconia Township will not own a piece of the equipment, but has an agreement for capacity and is responsible for costs associated with the operation of the facility. Per the current Agreement between FSA and TBA, none of the assets would belong to FSA.

A Musselman/Nice motion carried unanimously (3-0) authorizing the staff to proceed with the purchase of a new centrifuge for $1,124,500 as outlined in the Engineer’s cost estimate and Mr. Fournier’s proposal spreadsheet.

REPORTS:

TREASURER’S REPORT: Accepted as presented.

WATER DEPARTMENT REPORT: We received a written report for the file.

Mr. Fournier reported that there was an oil leak at 302-304 West Broad Street that ran down Broad Street from 3rd Street to the Telford Firehouse. Mr. Fournier informed the Board that our guys did a great job with the clean-up; there was very quick thinking from both the Fire Department and the Public Works Department. No oil got into the creek, and very little oil got into the WWTF. The clean-up took about 5-6 hours and a claim for labor and materials will be submitted to the property owner’s insurance company.

COLLECTION REPORT: We received a written report for the file.

WASTEWATER TREATMENT REPORT: We received a written report for the file.

Mr. Fournier reported that we are still wrestling with a control board issue on the emergency generator at the WWTF. He added that Bill Mattson is making good progress in his recovery, and asked that everybody keep him in their thoughts.

PTWA REPORT: We received a written report for the file.

SOLICITOR’S REPORT: We received a written report for the file.

ENGINEER’S REPORT: We received a written report for the file.

Engineer Patrick DiGangi reported that he is working on the Chapter 94 Report, and that he expects to have Franconia Township’s report tomorrow. Mr. DiGangi added that we are hoping to hear good news by the end of this month about the DCED grant that TBA applied for last fall, for Phase III of the West Broad Street project.

MANAGER’S REPORT: We received a written report for the file.

Mr. Fournier reported that he, Gary Yoder and Todd Mathe met with a representative from the Pennsylvania Rural Water Association and a vendor regarding a backflow prevention program, which TBA may look into implementing in the coming year.

OTHER BUSINESS:

Mr. Fournier informed the Board that, as a follow-up to the Regulatory Call to Action meeting held on February 23rd, an e-mail was sent to the municipalities and organizations who were invited asking them to contribute $2-4,000 towards the cost of Hall & Associates preparing group strategy documents to resolve TMDL and MS4 permitting issues impacting Pennsylvania communities. Several groups who attended on February 23rd verbally committed to contributing.

A Nice/Musselman motion carried unanimously (3-0) authorizing TBA to contribute $2-4,000 towards this group strategy project.

Payment of the bills and requisitions for the month of February in the amount of $508,042.76 was approved unanimously (3-0) by a Musselman/Nice motion.

Signing of the checks was approved unanimously (3-0) by a Nice/Musselman motion.

The meeting was adjourned at 6:58 pm by a Musselman/Nice motion.

Respectfully submitted,

Mark D. Fournier

Assistant Secretary

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