July 17, 2008

Thursday Headlines: Hefty Price Tag for Peoria CSO Fix

Posted in California, Colorado, Florida, Illinois, Massachusetts, Missouri, Pennsylvania, Virginia at 9:56 am by bengann

Protecting the Illinois River from combined sewer overflows (CSOs) could cost the city of Peoria, Illinois up to $262 million. By the end of this year, the city must formulate a plan to reduce its CSOs enough to satisfy the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency and the EPA. Peoria is one of more than 700 U.S. communities that have sewer systems which combine wastewater and stormwater.

Headlines
In California, a sewage spill closed a portion of San Clemente Beach. The spill occurred when a piece of debris got stuck in a valve at the sewage treatment plant.

Residents of some Columbia, Missouri neighborhoods could be without clean water until Friday morning, depending on the results of bacterial contamination tests. A precautionary boil order was issued Wednesday morning after a 16-inch water main broke late Tuesday night.

The town of Lake Hamilton, Florida will have a new water treatment plant within two years thanks in part to a $2.4 million loan and a $923,800 grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

In Elizabeth, Colorado, a water main break Tuesday night caused the town to lose approximately one million gallons of water. Residents had to rely on bottled water, and businesses had no other choice than to close down for the day.

Sewer Rate News
Manassas Park, Virginia
Marysville, California
Milford, Massachusetts
Rockport, Pennsylvania

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July 16, 2008

Wednesday Headlines: Big Water Main Break in PG County, MD

Posted in Florida, Iowa, Maryland, Massachusetts, Mississippi, New Jersey, Ohio, Oregon at 12:42 pm by bengann

A water main break early this morning in Langley Park, Maryland has completely shut down part of a major thoroughfare. Crews are working on repairing the 24-inch main and anticipate completion  sometime on Thursday. The cause of the break was aging infrastructure. (picture courtesy of WRC-TV)

Headlines
Nearly 9 million gallons of sewage overflowed late Monday and early Tuesday into the Patapsco River at the Annapolis Road Bridge in Halethorpe, Maryland. The sanitary sewer overflow is believed to have started after an obstruction damaged a pump then causing a pumping station to flood.

Hundreds of Perth Amboy, New Jersey homes and businesses are without water this morning after a 20-inch water main break.

The village of Milford Center, Ohio finds itself in the position of needing to fund needed water projects, but not having the funds to do so. The village will eventually need to fund $450,000 to $500,000 in needed water system improvements.

The city of Fayette, Iowa has learned that the cost to bring its wastewater treatment facility up to state standards could be $1.2 million.

Sewer Rate News
Biloxi, Mississippi
Hermiston, Oregon
Massachusetts – the entire state
Mount Dora, Florida

July 15, 2008

Tuesday Headlines: Five Years in, New Paltz Continues Sewer Repairs

Posted in California, Kentucky, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, Ohio, Virginia at 11:14 am by bengann

Five years after New York state authorities demanded action to address sewer overflows, repairs to the Village of New Paltz sewer system are continuing. The following quote from the story is reflective of the situation throughout the country.

New Paltz is symbolic of a larger national problem. Overflows are common among the nation’s aging sewer systems, and federal and state authorities have begun stepping up enforcement.

New Paltz’s problems have been caused by too much water flowing through too small a system.

Headlines
Officials in Henderson, Kentucky are planning a $9 million sewer project that will separate the sewer system from the storm system. The city’s combined sewer system during periods of heavy rain have caused sewage to overflow into the Ohio River.

In Long Beach, California, a 300-gallon raw sewage spill Sunday night forced the closure of beaches at Alamitos Bay and Colorado Lagoon. This marks the third sewage spill this year that has resulted in a beach closure for Long Beach.

A major water main break in Bladensburg, Maryland overnight is expected to snarl traffic in the area today. Officials said the break was likely due to the water main being old. The pipe had been installed in 1925.

A bond measure request to pay for a new water treatment plant for the City of Newport, Virginia will be voted on by residents in the November general election. Four core projects at a cost of $15.9 million were identified as top priorities in order for the city to continue providing safe drinking water to its residents.

Sewer Rate News
Cambria, California
Covina, California
North Andover, Massachusetts
Ventura, California

July 14, 2008

Monday Headlines: Continued Sewer Overflows Prompt Another Lawsuit

Posted in California, Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Ohio, Texas at 12:53 pm by bengann

Some residents of Portsmouth, Ohio are tired of the mix of rainwater and untreated sewage overflowing into their homes, garages and yards when the city’s sewer system is overwhelmed. In 2004, a group of residents filed a lawsuit against the city that is still  pending in Scioto County Common Pleas Court. Now another group of neighbors is preparing to file a second lawsuit to try to force the city to fix the problem.

Headlines
Residents in Canyon, Texas are still being urged to conserve water after two water main breaks this weekend.

The Monday morning commute was a bit slower for some motorists in Takoma Park, Maryland after a water main break shut down part of Piney Branch Road.

Four water main breaks early Saturday morning in Worcester, Massachusetts left 20 percent of the city without water or slow-running, murky water for most of the day. The city’s director of water and sewer operations wasn’t sure what caused the breaks, but age may have had something to do with it. One of the broken pipes was 82 years old.

Some Oil City, Louisiana residents worry raw sewage spilled near their homes is impacting the water quality of Caddo Lake and threatening the health and safety of swimmers, anglers and boaters.

Sewer Rate News
Chauncey, Ohio
Hammond, Louisiana
Riverside, California
Wichita, Kansas

July 11, 2008

Friday Headlines: Water Main Breaks Continue in Vallejo, Calif.

Posted in California, Idaho, Nebraska, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin at 11:37 am by bengann

For the second time this week, a ruptured water main left some residents and businesses in Vallejo, California without water. A 16-foot section of cast iron pipe split open, spewing thousands of gallons of water and rupturing the street surface above the pipe. City officials place the cost to repair the pipeline and the street from Thursday’s break at $100,000.

Headlines
More from California, yesterday in Simi Valley a buildup of grease, sticks and paper caused a blockage in a sewer line, causing sewage to overflow from a manhole. Between 250 and 500 gallons of sewage discharged into the street, a storm drain and then into Arroyo Simi.

As the residents of Ammon, Idaho try to deal with water infrastructure problems in newer neighborhoods, some of the older neighborhoods are also requiring the city’s attention.

In Ohio, a sinkhole is causing numerous problems in a Toledo community. As the sinkhole continues to increase in size, so does the smell of sewage.

A sinkhole in Omaha nearly swallowed a car Thursday afternoon. A representative from the Metropolitan Utilities District said a water main break caused the sinkhole.

Sewer Rate News
Cranberry, Pennsylvania
Lake Placid, New York
Shawano County, Wisconsin

July 10, 2008

Thursday Headlines: Sewage Overflow Kills Fish in Tallapoosa River

Posted in Alabama, California, Florida, Michigan, Texas, Uncategorized, Virginia, Washington at 11:38 am by bengann

Sewage overflows from a wastewater treatment facility in Wadley , Alabama is being blamed for the death of fish in the Tallapoosa River (pictured). Sewer overflows have been a continuing problem for Wadley due to effluent discharge when the system is overloaded. The excess discharge ultimately ends up in the Tallapoosa River.

Headlines
King County, Washington is being fined $30,000 for a sewage spill that polluted a restored stretch of Ravenna Creek. The state Department of Ecology issued the penalty for the May spill that unleashed 6.4 million gallons of raw sewage.

In Virginia, a water line break between Clarke County’s water treatment plant and the Town of Berryville caused an estimated 175,000 gallons of water to be lost in the 30 minutes it took to catch the break.

Two separate sewage spills caused portions of Big Bear Lake in California to be declared off limits for body contact with the water.

More from California, Roseville and Placer County face $126,000 in combined penalties for exceeding effluent limitations in treated sewage from wastewater treatment plants. The violations occurred over a seven-year period form 2000 to 2007.

Sewer Rate News
Indian Rocks Beach, Florida
Lapeer, Michigan
Laredo, Texas
Los Altos, California

July 9, 2008

Wednesday Headlines: Sewage Blamed for Algae Growth in Buffalo-area Lake

Posted in California, Iowa, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas at 11:20 am by bengann

In Buffalo and Erie County, sewage overflows are being blamed for the growth of algae in Hoyt Lake. Summer rains, warmer temperatures and sewage runoff have brought algae in full force to some parts of the lake. Algae is forming mostly around the edges and east end of the lake caused by sewage and sediment runoff flowing toward Lake Erie from eastern Buffalo suburbs.

Headlines
Bettendorf, Iowa has repeatedly had to dump raw sewage into the Mississippi River during flooding and heavy rains, and the state’s Department of Natural Resources wants to know why.

In Pittsburgh, local health departments are warning people to stay clear of rivers because of sewage in the waters. Today is the 14th day of combined sewer overflow alerts for Allegheny County.  Click here for a KDKA-TV report from yesterday on the alert.

Last year 1.7 million gallons of untreated sewage flowed through Newell Canyon in Oregon City, Oregon–a spill that was unknown for 69 days. Now after being fined $12,800 by the state Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) for the incident, the city has had the fine reduced and is in talks with DEQ to get a portion of the fine to go toward an environmental stewardship project in the city.

A broken force main in Berlin, Maryland leaked between 500 and 1,000 gallons of raw sewage into a wooded area last week.

Sewer Rate News
Brownsville, Texas
Coos Bay, Oregon
Encinitas, California
Framingham, Massachusetts

July 8, 2008

Tuesday Headlines: Big Rate Hike for Barnstead, N.H. Neighborhood

Posted in Alabama, California, Indiana, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Texas at 11:06 am by bengann

The Pennichuck Corporation is asking the state of New Hampshire to approve a rate hike of 311 percent for some Barnstead-area residents. If approved, a homeowner who usually pays $40 a month for water now, would pay about $164 a month. Pennichuck says the increase is necessary to pay for a water system that underwent $4 million in renovations over the past two years.

Headlines
Light rail service in San Francisco on the L-Taraval line is back to normal after hours of disruption caused by a water main break. A Public Utilities Commission spokesperson said the water main failure appeared to be due to age.

Motorists are being advised to avoid a major intersection today in Lakewood, New Jersey. The Ocean County Utility Authority is working on a sewer construction project that has the roadway closed for excavation.

The city of Monticello, Indiana’s plan to correct its combined sewer overflow system has been deemed outdated and will have to undergo revisions despite preliminary approval given by the state’s Department of Environmental Management.

In Gulf Shores, Alabama, approximately 200 gallons of untreated sewage went into a storm drain that may be connected to Little Lagoon. The health department says residents should use caution if using Little Lagoon for recreational purposes. 

Sewer Rate News
Abilene, Texas
Fort Wayne, Indiana
Gloucester, Massachusetts
West College Corner, Indiana

July 7, 2008

Monday Headlines: Bridgeport Sewer Project Nearing Completion

Posted in Connecticut, Florida, Maine, Missouri, Montana, New Mexico, Wisconsin at 10:30 am by bengann

Since Spring 2004, the East Side of Bridgeport, Connecticut has been undergoing a massive project to replace the area’s old sewer mains. While residents have complained about torn up streets there is good news as the project is expected to be completed by the end of the year.

In addition, the city is separating its storm sewer and sanitary sewer systems. Bridgeport has not upgraded its sewer system since it was first installed in the early 1900s.

Headlines
More from the Nutmeg State, a portion of Route 85 in Waterford is expected to reopen today as crews repair the damage this weekend from a broken water main. Water from the break, which occurred early Friday morning, eroded the earth under the pavement and left a 10-foot-deep hole between 10 and 15 feet in diameter in the middle of Route 85.

In Albuquerque, A huge sinkhole nearly swallowed a fire truck this morning. The sinkhole was formed after a large water line broke under the street.

In Lewiston, Maine, public works crews worked through the night on Saturday to repair a broken sewer pipe, after the collapse of a section of a 20-inch sewer line serving a large part of the city. Crews planned to repair the line by cutting out the broken section and attaching a new PVC-pipe with couplings to the existing clay line.

A detour of Highway 16 in Tomah, Wisconsin has been lifted after work was completed on a sewer pipeline that collapsed on Friday, June 27.

Sewer Rate News
Dillon, Montana
Jacksonville, Florida
Ocala, Florida
O’Fallon, Missouri

July 3, 2008

Thursday Headlines: Philadelphia Water Rate May Go up 30%

Posted in Iowa, Maryland, Massachusetts, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia at 11:36 am by bengann

If the city of Philadelphia gets its way, water and sewer rates will increase by 30% over the next three years. A series of hearings will be held on the rate increase, however Philadelphia Water Commissioner Bernard Brunwasser will make the final decision.

Headlines
A large water main break has left some San Antonio residents wading through water. According to news reports, water ran all the way up the street and actually formed a mini-lake. (picture courtesy of WOAI-TV)

Rainfall from a strong series of thunderstorms passed through the Willamette Valley this morning causing Portland, Oregon’s sewers to overflow. The public is being advised to stay away from recreational activity in the Willamette River for at least the next two days.

Construction has just been completed on a new $3.1 million wastewater treatment plant in Funkstown, Maryland.

In the Massachusetts State Senate, a wastewater management bill passed unanimously on Monday, which would provide financial assistance for wastewater planning to communities that have achieved specific state water quality and management standards.

Sewer Rate News
Belmond, Iowa
Elkton, Virginia
Melrose, Massachusetts
Tualatin, Oregon

That’s it until Monday. Enjoy the holiday weekend.

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