Town of Pittsford, Vermont

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November 28, 2007


Water and Sewer Commission Members Present - David Markowski, Hope Rantanen, Helen McKinley, Allen Hitchcock, John Lapre. Others Present - Kathleen Ramsay and Kelly Giard - Recording Secretary.

David Markowski called the meeting to order at 6:00 PM.

D. Markowski asked that everyone introduce themselves to others present.

D. Markowski stated that the agenda would be out in ample time for review.  K. Ramsay stated that it is her goal to have the agenda for the next meeting out by the Friday prior to the meeting date.

Organizational Section:

K. Ramsay asked for nominations for the position of Chair of the newly formed Water & Sewer Commission.

A. Hitchcock nominated D. Markowski.  Mr. Hitchcock explained the reasoning of Mr. Markowski's experience with this portion of the board that was previously incorporated with the Select board.  Motion seconded by H. Rantanen.  Mr. Markowski was voted chair unanimously.

D. Markowski asked for nominations for the position of Vice Chair of the Water & Sewer Commission.

D. Markowski nominated A. Hitchcock as Vice Chair and explained the reasoning of Mr. Hitchcock's experience with this portion of the board.  Motion seconded by H. McKinley.  Mr. Hitchcock was voted Vice Chair unanimously.

Discussion of the future meeting schedule resulted in members agreeing that the first and third Wednesday of each month at 5:30 PM (preceding the Select board meeting) was acceptable.  A decision was made to forgo the meeting on the first Wednesday of December.

D. Markowski explained the process of approving the minutes of a previous meeting.  The meeting will be presented in the form of notes and not an actual transcript.  The minutes will be included in the packet for members to review and discuss at the next meeting.  The minutes will be signed by members and placed in the vault for storage and future use.

A. Hitchcock explained the water meter update, wastewater treatment facility design and cleaning proposal and what happened to the sludge to the new members.  These were discussion topics in the November 7, 2007 minutes.

J. Lapre inquired if any lines had ever been "smoked."  D. Markowski explained that some lines had been TV'd.

D. Markowski stated that there would be more history discussed at the next meeting.

Public Comment

None noted at this time


A. Hitchcock explained the system project and the impact on the Route 7 project.  Currently the engineering study for the section from Kendall Hill Road to Plains Road is estimated at $35,000.  K. Ramsay stated that there is a 0% interest loan that can be applied for to help with funding of this project.  The final design for this project is expected at the end of January or the middle of February.   

Currently, the fire hydrants are not sized properly to State standards and this will need to be reviewed.

Route 7 South is inadequate for the current users.  There was much explanation on this stating that, currently, the water pressure is at a minimum with no users drawing water and when someone draws water, this decreases the water pressure.

Goals were discussed.  K. Ramsay stated that there is a timeline that was included in packets that should be followed to meet deadlines.  D. Markowski stated that there should be a review of a "short list" of engineering firms at the December 19 meeting with 3 minimum and 5 maximum.  These engineering firms will be contacted for a Request for Proposal (RFP) to work on the current Route 7 project.  K. Ramsay stated that she would work on this project for the next meeting.  K. Ramsay stated that there is a deadline of April 1, 2008 to be considered for loan funds.  Tim Raymond from the State is also looking for an "Annual Report" for the status of the project. 

D. Markowski asked members to review the budget.  K. Ramsay stated that the Water budget appears to be in "good shape," however, the board should look at Capital Reserves in the future budgets.  A. Hitchcock stated that the water rates have been compared with comparable towns and these rates are "quite favorable."  A. Hitchcock inquired when the last water rate change occurred.  No one has any recall as to this increase.  D. Markowski stated that bonds for projects govern the water rates whether folks are on the water system or not due to the need for fire control throughout the town.

K. Ramsay stated that the current water user averages $200 per year.  The USDA is looking at the current user to be around $400 per year. 

D. Markowski asked members to review the budget for further discussion at the December 19 meeting.  K. Ramsay will work on the Capital Item and the indicated rates (to include bond repayment and balances) for the next meeting.


K. Ramsay stated that the proposal for the Wastewater Treatment Facility second contact chlorine chamber and sludge pumping station improvements has not been received by Otter Creek Engineering.  K. Ramsay stated that she would contact them again and request this information for the December 19 meeting.  K. Ramsay stated that there were some VOSHA issues that were being resolved and this is what has been delaying the current request.

K. Ramsay gave some history of dyes being found in the system.  There were sample letters distributed for review to be sent to the sewer customers.  D. Markowski explained the history of some chemicals entering the system and the ramifications of this happening.  K. Ramsay stated that the State of Vermont supplied the samples and will assist in the distribution of this letter to customers on the sewer system.  D. Markowski recommends that K. Ramsay work with the State to get this letter and information out to the public.  Members agreed.

D. Markowski explained the Plant Operation Capacity Report.  K. Ramsay stated that the State will be discontinuing this report, however, she has set up databases to supply this report to the Commission on a monthly basis.  The State was reporting every 3 months. 

A. Hitchcock explained the policy established for the Police Academy.  D. Markowski stated that some residences on Furnace Road have private systems and would like to be able to connect to the Town system.

J. Lapre inquired what the connection fee was.  K. Ramsay stated that the current connection fee was $500 plus incurred charges. 

D. Markowski and A. Hitchcock explained the infiltration on the Elm Street system.  Currently, there are 15 houses on Elm Street that are connected to the system and when there is a storm, the in-flow is substantial. 

D. Markowski asked members to review the budget for further discussion at the December 19 meeting.  K. Ramsay stated that there is a deficit in the Sewer Fund.  K. Ramsay stated that she would research possible increases to "balance" the budget.  Currently, there are less than 250 users on the system.  The budget does not include any work on the Chlorine or Sludge improvements.  There may need to be a bond for this funding. 

Other Busines

Next meeting to be held on December 19, 2007.


Executive Session

None at this time.

Meeting adjourned at 7:58 PM 

Respectfully submitted:

Kelly Giard, Recording Secretary

David Markowski, Chair

Allen Hitchcock, Vice Chair

John Lapre

Helen McKinley

Hope Rantanen



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