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Meriden, Connecticut



Chairman Gradwell called the Public Hearing for the Assessment of a Sanitary Sewer Main Extension on Oregon Road to order at 6:30 p.m. and read the legal notice of the Public Hearing as it appeared in the Record Journal on Friday, March 11, 2011, and Saturday, March 12, 2011 into the record (copy in official records).  Chairman Gradwell called for public comment in favor of the proposed changes.

Carlos Ruiz, Milone & MacBroom, spoke on behalf of the Applicant, Silver Meadows Development, LLC, and gave details of the plans.  He states that the proposed subdivision is a 5 lot development and that the proposal has already been brought before both the Inland Wetlands & Watercourse Commission and the Planning and Zoning Commission for the City of Meriden and has received approval.  The proposal is for approximately 350 feet of sewer main extension to be installed off-road with an easement granted to the City of Meriden.  The sewer will include 4 manholes for maintenance purposes as shown on the submitted plans.

Dennis Waz questioned the right-of-way easement asking if the new line would be installed along the 10 foot centerline.  Mr. Ruiz indicated that the line would be installed according to City Standards and that it would be run along the centerline of the easement.  Mr. Waz questioned the plantings in the development and Mr. Ruiz indicated that modifications could be made if necessary.  Mr. Waz questioned the length and configuration of the laterals serving the proposed properties citing a lack of clean-outs.  Mr. Ruiz stated that the plan was representational of the overall project only and that each individual property would require individual site plan approval through the Engineering Department and such concerns would be addressed individually as required by the City.  Mr. Waz questioned some of the driveway sizes shown on the plan stating that the City of Meriden’s maintenance vehicles were quite large and accommodations would have to be made to allow for line maintenance by the City.  Mr. Ruiz stated that revisions individual site plans would address these concerns.

Discussion followed including tree removal, future sewer main extensions to possibly serve houses on Coe Avenue that currently have septic systems, and easements to be ceded to the City.  Chairman Martorelli questioned whether Mr. Ruiz had the authority to grant an easement along Coe Avenue on behalf of his clients.  Mr. Ruiz indicated that he did not have such authority and would need to confer with his clients on the Commissions requests.  The Commission thanked Mr. Ruiz for his presentation.

Chairman Gradwell called for any additional public comments in favor of the project twice.   Hearing none, he called for public comment against the proposed changes three times.  Hearing none, a motion was made by Vice Chairman Martorelli to continue the current Public Hearing to the next regularly scheduled meeting of the Commission to be held on April 19, 2011.  The motion was seconded by Commissioner Cook and carried unanimously.

6:30 P.M.


Chairman Gradwell called the regular meeting of the Public Utilities Commission for March 15, 2011, to order at 6:43 p.m.  Commission Secretary Nader Saleh read the roll call.

2.      ROLL CALL
        Present:                Raymond Gradwell, Chairman
                                Gennaro Martorelli, Vice-Chairman
                                Nader Saleh, Secretary*
                                William Cook
                                William Godburn

* Let the record show that Secretary Saleh arrived at 6:32 p.m.

        Others Present: David P. Lohman, Director of Public Utilities
                                Dennis Waz, Superintendent
                                Pierre L. Blanchet, P.E./L.S., City Engineer
                                Debra Hazen, Administrative Secretary
                                Lisa Vecchitto, 79 Genest Street – Item 6A
                                Carlos Ruiz, Milone &MacBroom – Item 7A
                                Lawrence Rosenthal, Power Reduction Services, LLC – Item 7B
                                Kirk Whatley, Sonic Solutions – Item 7B
                                Devon Taylor, Sonic Solutions – Item 7B
                                George Bucchi, Pyramid Technologies – Item 7B

A motion was made by Commissioner Cook to change the order of the regularly scheduled meeting.  The motion was seconded by Commissioner Saleh and carried unanimously.


        B.      Algae Prevention – Sonic Solutions  (verbal)

Lawrence Rosenthal, Power Reduction Services, LLC, addressed the Commission and gave details on their Companies and their product.  Kirk Whatley and Devon Taylor, Sonic Solutions, also addressed the Commission.  Kirk Whatley states that Sonic Solutions provides ultrasonic algae control using no chemicals and is safe for fish, plants and other aquatic life.  Promotional materials were distributed.

The product is manufactured by Pyramid Technologies which is based in Meriden.  He further states that the product has proven effective for treating Spirogyra and Blue-Green Algae, both of which are a problem in Meriden’s reservoirs during various parts of the year.  The technology utilizes ultrasonic waves pop the vesicles in the algae causing it to die off prematurely.  Currently, there is no permitting required by the EPA or DEP for the installation of this equipment.  His company is proposing a total of 6 units for the Bradley/Hubbard Reservoir as a pilot program.  The proposed total would be approximately $99,010.00.  

The units are powered by solar-rechargeable batteries which have a ten day charge life with no sun.  The emitter is tethered to the bottom of a floating raft which supports the solar units and battery.  It has a kill range of approximately 600 feet.  There is a seven day kill cycle at start-up of the equipment.  The Company recommends harvesting the dead algae by raking it off the surface of the lake for composting if there is any significant accumulation.  The materials could be allowed to sink, but decomposition could cause oxygen issues.  Discussion followed.
Maintenance would consist of raft deployment and removal seasonally and the emitters need to be wiped off approximately every eight weeks.  Sonic Solutions would provide installation and removal seasonally and full maintenance for the first year for the quoted price.  The products that they are proposing could be rented, leased, or purchased.  Fabrication, assembly and delivery would take approximately two to three weeks.

Cost savings for purchase/rental vs. chemical costs were discussed.  Vice-Chairman Martorelli questioned whether the company could provide some sort of a money back guarantee.  The Company states that the product comes with a two year manufacturer warranty which their Company extends for an additional three years for a total of five years, but that they would compose a letter for the Commission with further details.  The Commission directed Staff to investigate this product further and report back to the Committee at next month’s meeting.

A motion was made by Vice-Chairman Martorelli to return to the regular order of the meeting.  Motion was seconded by Commissioner Cook and carried unanimously.


A.      Minutes of the Regular Meeting of February 15, 2011

A motion was made by Commissioner Cook to approve the minutes of the regular meeting of February 15, 2011.  The motion was seconded by Commissioner Saleh and carried unanimously.




A.      16 Summer Street – Alan Rothenberg – Consumption Adjustment Policy - $525.00

David Lohman gave details of the Consumption Adjustment Request stating that it meets the requirements for adjustment and recommended in favor of granting the adjustment.  A motion was made Vice Chairman Martorelli to approve the applicant’s request for the Consumption Adjustment Policy in the amount of $525.00.  The motion was seconded by Commissioner Cook and carried unanimously with Commissioner Saleh abstaining.


A.      79 Genest Street– Lisa Vecchitto – Protest of a Water/Sewer Billing

David Lohman gave details as to the history of the protest.  An appointment was set with New Haven Water to have the meter tested.  Mr. Vecchitto was contacted, but he declined to have the meter tested at this time.  Discussion followed.  A motion was made by Vice-Chairman Martorelli to deny the protest without prejudice.  Chairman Gradwell noted that the property in question had a swimming pool that might have contributed to the high water usage.  The motion was seconded by Commissioner Cook and carried unanimously.


        A.      Oregon Road Sanitary Sewer Extension – Brownstone Commons

This item was tabled due to the fact that the Public Hearing was continued to next month.

        B.      Algae Prevention – Sonic Solutions

Discussion followed.  It was noted that there are no references for the Company from Municipal Water Companies in Connecticut.  Staff was directed to compile an economic analysis for next month’s meeting.  A motion was made by Vice-Chairman Martorelli to table this item to next month’s agenda.  Motion was seconded by Commissioner Cook and carried unanimously.

        C.      Nitrogen Credit Report

Dennis Waz stated that the current nitrogen credit purchase for the WPCF totals $148,587.00 and credits are currently at $4.59/lb. which is the same price as last year.  He notes that in February, the Plant discharged only 156 lbs/d; well below the current discharge permit limit of 493 lb/d.  March has had high flows due to significant rain events.  During a recent rain event, the Plant experienced a flow rate of 51 mg/d with an overflow of 18 mg/d.  Residual effects are still resulting in flows of approximately 22 mg/d.


        A.      Water Production Report/Water Reservoir Levels

David Lohman reports water production has been averaging a little above 5 mgd which is normal for Winter months.  Reservoirs are full due to Spring melt and significant rain events.

        B.      Water Pollution Control Facility Upgrade Status Report  (verbal)

Dennis Waz stated that we are winding down on the punch list phase of the project.  There are still a few items that need to be addressed.  He anticipates phosphorus removal start-up in April.

        C.      Inflow and Infiltration Remediation Status Report (verbal)

Dennis Waz stated that the contractor was currently working on installing the lining for the 24” line through Hanover Pond.  The contractor is currently by-pass pumping.  The contractor identified a break in the bottom of the pipe in the area of Habershon Field which was taking in water at approximately 500 gallons a minute (7.200 gallons/day).  Repair of this break will significantly reduce flows to the WPCF Plant.  Staff is very impressed with the work the contractor has been doing.  The Contractor will resume lining streets and manholes in the beginning of April – possibly sooner depending on weather conditions.

        A.      Letter to CT DEP, Clean Water Fund from Lawrence J. Kendzior, City Manager, dated
February 25, 2011, re:  City of Meriden, Project No. CWF 382-C, WPCF Upgrade – Application for Payment 30.
        B.      Letter to CT DEP, Clean Water Fund from Lawrence J. Kendzior, City Manager, dated
February 23, 2011, re:  City of Meriden, Project No. CWF 209-CSL, Rehabilitation of Sanitary Sewer Collection System – Application for Payment 4.
C.      Letter to Mr. James Willhite from Dennis Waz RE:   Water Main Extension – Allen Avenue
        D.      Letter to Food Preparation Establishments from Francis Russo RE:   FOG Program
        E.      Revised Public Utilities Commission Contact List


        A.      Information on Quarterly Billing for Water and Sewer

David Lohman gave details on the transition to quarterly billing.  A new bill is being developed for the new software system the City will be using.  This will allow special messages to be added to an individual bill for a specific property.  There will also be a graph showing monthly usages like people see on their electric or gas bills.

        B.      Carpenter Avenue Water Tank Liner

David Lohman reports that this project is currently out to bid.  A pre-bid meeting was held this morning.  He anticipates bids being opened in the beginning of April.  He has already spoken with the Fire Department regarding the water tank being off-line.

        C.      113 Sunset Manor – Violet Tehrani – Protest of a Water/Sewer Bill

David Lohman states that multiple members of the Staff have been in contact with Mrs. Tehrani.  She feels that she misunderstood the appeal process and would like to have an additional appeal.  Staff checked with the Legal Department, and was told that there is only one appeal per protest and that if Mrs. Tehrani wished to pursue further action, she would have to go through outside resources.


A motion was made by Commissioner Saleh to adjourn the meeting at 8:14 p.m.  The motion was seconded by Vice-Chairman Martorelli and carried unanimously.

_____________________________________           _____________________________
Nader Saleh, Secretary                                  Date

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