County approves wastewater upgrades
Glenn County supervisors gave the greenlight Tuesday for potential upgrades to Hamilton City's wastewater treatment plant.
The Hamilton City Community Services District wants to put in new pumps and grinding equipment that will mechanically grind up solid waste dumped into the community sewer system.
Planning and Public Works Director John Linhart said the county is working as an advisory agency on the project.
Supervisors approved a wastewater pumping station study Tuesday that can be used to develop the project in the future.
Linhart said it was paid for with funds from a Department of Housing and Community Development grant obtained by the county to cover the costs of not only the Hamilton City study, but a countywide economic development plan and a senior citizen housing needs assessment study.
Coleman Engineering, Inc. was selected to perform the wastewater study, officials said.
The Board of Supervisors accepted the study and voted to authorize its submission to the state for its review and approval.
It also authorized Linhart to make state-requested modifications to the study and authorized the community services district and county to use the study for future funding applications and construction projects.
Linhart said the engineer presented several options to the Hamilton City Community Services District Board but ultimately it decided on an alternative that combines both grinding equipment and screens to rid the sewer ponds of unwanted solid wastes, he said.
The district also wants to install new pumps to be mounted on a rail system, so they can be raised and worked on out of the water.
Small plastic solids like tampon holders, rags and clothing can clog the system, Linhart said, which means waste plant employees must clear them out.
Long conversations were conducted with the community services district board, the engineer, sewer plant operators and Linhart about what should be done, he said.
"They wanted the most efficient and long-lasting system that would work without people having to flush it out," Linhart said.
Grinders can grind up many of these items while screens can filter things out, he said, but they will require regular maintenance and replacement.
Construction estimates ranged from $193,000 to $571,000, Linhart added, with the community services district opting for the $571,000 plan.
He said the goal is to have waste plants last from 20 to 50 years, and this new equipment probably could go 50 years as long as it is maintained.
The current system is 50 years old.
Other advantages to the proposed plan listed by the engineer are: rail mounted pumps minimize the need for manned entry into the sewer and grinding equipment will reduce large solids to a manageable size. Vertical mounted screens also will lift debris to the surface.
Disadvantages listed were the equipment will still require regular maintenance and replacement and it is the most expensive.
Linhart said he does not know what funding or loan sources the community services district will seek for the project's construction or the timetable.