Parkersburg Utility Board finishes with project funds

Compensation to Worthington Golf Club finalized

PARKERSBURG — The Parkersburg Utility Board this week approved the final draw down of funds for the wastewater treatment plant upgrade completed last year.

Although it’s been nearly a year since the main project wrapped up, the utility continued to use contingency funds to address other needs, since the project came in under budget.

PUB Manager Eric Bennett has previously said the current sewer rates were set based on repaying the $12.8 million loan for the project, which included the contingency funds and not spending the full amount would have no impact on rates.

The remaining $64,918.01 from the West Virginia Infrastructure and Jobs Council loan that funded the project was primarily used to upgrade a boiler at the plant, Bennett said after Wednesday’s regular board meeting.

In other business, the board unanimously approved bringing in an outside contractor to address a blockage in one of the plant’s secondary digesters.

“There’s some kind of blockage in the pipe,” Bennett said. “We’ve been internally attempting to get it opened up.”

Bennett said the blockage is in a line that draws biosolid remnants of the treatment process — “digested” sludge, not untreated waste — into a storage area before it is taken out and applied to farmland. Whatever the blockage is likely will not be suitable for land application and will have to be taken to a landfill, he said.

The contractor is expected to arrive in mid-December.

Bennett said the utility is making its final payment to Worthington Golf Club to compensate it for damages incurred during a trunk sewer line rehabilitation project along Worthington Creek earlier this year. The final total paid to the business was $16,254.48.

“They have signed the release, and we’ll make final payment,” Bennett said.

The board also unanimously approved the first payment on a filter valve replacement project at the wastewater plant, $6,281.10 to contractor G.M. McCrossin Inc.