City Seeks Cost Estimates for Adding Sewer to Unserved Areas

December 4, 2012
Dwayne Page

City officials will ask Smithville's engineering firm, the J.R. Wauford Company, to come up with estimates on what it could cost to make city sewer available to a handful of places in town that don't have access to the service.

Alderman Shawn Jacobs raised the issue at the city council meeting on November 19. "If I'm not mistaken, there are houses in the city limits that don't have sewer. And I know we also have some areas that have requested annexation. What is keeping us from running sewer to the houses that are currently in the city limits that don't have sewer?. I certainly think we should provide them sewer before we start thinking of annexing any other areas that might be requested or specified in our five year land use plan. There may be some grant money available," said Alderman Jacobs.

Secretary-Treasurer Hunter Hendrixson said Monday night that since the last meeting city officials have done some checking and found the areas in town that don't currently have access to city sewer services. "Alderman Jacobs had a question at the last meeting on why all city residents don't have sewer service. To be honest I don't really know," said Hendrixson. " But we have several spots in town. We have a couple on Riley Avenue, Braswell Lane. We have two houses across from the high school on Highway 70. There's one on Martin Road off by the Smith Road Park. We've talked a little bit about it but I don't know that we've really come up with an answer yet. I guess we can get sewer to them," said Hendrixson

"Most of them (locations) will have to be under pressure systems," said Public Works Director Kevin Robinson."But before you do anything you'll have to get an engineer in here to draw them up just to see what the cost of it would be. That's the only thing I know to tell you," said Robinson.

"Do we have a total number of residences," asked Alderman Jacobs

"There's nine houses on Braswell Lane," according to Robinson. "There's one on Martin Drive there by Smith Road Park. There's three on Riley Avenue but they can tie on to the new Clark Lance subdivision. There's two by the high school but there you would probably have to (go through or under) the state highway which don't come easy," said Robinson.

Hendrixson and Robinson mentioned that the last major city sewer installation project was on Pack Circle at Allen's Ferry and Holmes Creek almost twenty years ago. "I think there were sixteen lots serviced in 1993," added Robinson. " Its on a pumping system. It actually runs across the golf course and ties down on Riley Avenue," he said.

"They (each house) have individual pumps," said Hendrixson. "Once you put them in the city has to maintain them. I think at the time that cost around $100,000 almost twenty years ago," he added.

"I just wonder if this is something we might consider for next year's budget to have our engineers take a look at it and just give us an idea of what it might cost to do that," said Alderman Jacobs. " I do think we ought to try to extend all the basic services of the city to all the residents if we can. We've got a very solvent water and sewer fund at the moment," he said.

"We can ask the J.R. Wauford company to do a study," said Hendrixson. " I'd say by the next couple of months we could have a rough estimate on what it would cost. Hopefully we could put in for some grants," he said.

"I would like to see us do that just for our own information and so we can plan for the future," said Alderman Jacobs.

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