Unexpected High Water Flow At New Town Lagoon Dominates Recent Town Meeting

Flows into the new Fairfield sewage lagoon are higher than predicted.

There was some tension in the December meeting of the Fairfield Town Council on December 12 when the issue of the town’s wastewater system came up on the agenda.

Over the past months the engineering firm, NCI Engineers, that did the design and planning for the costly upgrade has been confronted with a higher than expected effluent flow into the lagoon.

Councilman Ron Dauwalder expressed his concern to Idaho Trenberth, with NCI, telling the engineer, “I want to see it work. I’m disappointed at where we’re at.” Trenberth responded, saying that “NCI is taking ownership of the increased water.”

Mayor Bob Swartz weighed in, telling the council he was frustrated that the town pays “all this money, then has to pay more to make it right.”

After expressing their concerns, the town council expressed their desire to work with NCI and see the matter resolved. Council president Loren Tacke told the council, after discussing withholding the next release of funds to NCI, “By withholding funds, what have we gained?” Councilmember Terra Rosenbaum said, “We’ve got to keep working with them and keep a good relationship.

Idaho told the council that NCI “values our relationship with the town over many years. This is our favorite town to work with.”

Councilman Dauwalder made the motion to pay the next installment for the work done by NCI, saying, “with reservations noted.”

A motion was made to table the matter of the town’s new snow removal policy until the January meeting. The motion passed.

The matter of a water supply line from a fire hydrant at 3 Rivers was also tabled until the next meeting. 3 Rivers is seeking a supply line to more rapidly fill the water tanks used by the company in directional drilling projects.

The council decided to delay until next year the sale of the town’s large dump truck.

Nick Dale with the Fairfield Volunteer Fire Department reported that the firemen had received a $2,400 check from Sun River Electric to be used for training. Nick also reported that the fire department’s solar power unit seems to be working fine.

In his report, Mayor Swartz told the council, “There have been 12 meetings since I became mayor. It has been quite an eventful year.” He said he appreciated “the support of the town council and the town crew.”

The next meeting of the Fairfield Town Council will be at 6:00 p.m. on January 9, 2019 at the Fairfield Town Hall, next door to the Sun Times.