Construction crews should be close to tying Leitchfield’s existing water lines to the new raw water intake system by the end of this week, according to the city’s utilities superintendent.
Kevin Pharis updated the Utilities Commission on the status of the water intake project during the commissioners’ Aug. 16 meeting.
Earlier this month, commissioners approved 30-day extensions for Clay Pipeline of Manchester and Cleary Construction of Tompkinsville to complete the roughly $5 million project. Both firms must now wrap up their work by Sept. 8.
Pharis said workers have already tied the lines in at the water plant and have set the intake in place.
Even though they are wrapping up the work, there’s still a lot to do, he said, including repairing and replacing blacktop and other cleanup projects.
Leitchfield draws water from Rough River Lake for residential and commercial use. The new intake, in a spot closer to the dam, will replace the current one that goes from Peter Cave to Clifty Creek. The new spot will give the city a larger area to draw water from during winter pool, allowing the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to drop the lake level. It also could allow the city to draw more water overall if needed for future growth. A roughly nine-mile pipeline will bring water from the new intake to the city’s treatment plant.
Clay Pipeline is building the $3.7 million pipeline, while Cleary is building the $1.076 million intake.
In other action the commission approved hiring Circle M Automation of Leitchfield to replace the sand filter control panel at the wastewater treatment plant.
In a letter to the commission, Robin Strader, head of the wastewater treatment plant, noted the sand filter is an original piece of plant equipment, dating to 1979.
During the winter of 2009 the probe system — which controlled the filter’s automation operation — was damaged, Strader said. Wastewater workers operated the filter controls in manual mode until the summer of 2011, when motor starter and timer breaks forced them to bypass the sand filter. Strader said they weren’t able to find parts for the old equipment and couldn’t retrofit it with newer parts.
“The wastewater treatment plant was written up during the April 11, 2012, inspection for not having the sand filter in operation at that time,” she told commissioners, adding the cabinet that currently holds the control panel will be re-used to help keep costs down.
Pharis said they hadn’t had the money in last year’s budget to fix the panel, but the funds are in this year’s budget.