Citations

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by  August  15th.  This  part  of  the  borough  will  be  mandated  to  start  on-

line  service.  He  acknowledged  that  the  “substantial  completion”  date  –

 for  the  entire  scope  of  work  – was  pushed  back  to  September  15.

Near  the  end  of  the  very  long  July  session,  he  admitted,  “I  don’t  foresee  the

 final  completion  date  of  October  15th to  be  realistic.”

Loughran’s  comment  was  met  with  silence  while  attendees,  including  several  members  of  council,  assessed  the

 implications  of  further  delays  with  chewed  up  properties,  trenches  to  dig  for

 installation,  roads  disintegrating  under  months  of  heavy  equipment  and

 winter  looming  mere  months  away.

 NBSA  President  Ray  Shirk,  tried  to  clarify  between  reality  and  the  terms  of

 the  contract,  “So  you  are  saying  that

 60  more  days  to  do  all  that  is  out  there,  doesn’t  seem  like  enough?”  Loughran’s  response,  “No.”

Tempers  began  to  fray  during  the  discussion  of  these  approaching  deadlines

 for  sewer  installer,  Wexcon.  Loughran  was  asked  if  there  is  a  financial

 penalty  for  failure  to  meet  completion  dates.  “I  believe  it  is  $500  per

 day.”  He  quickly  added  that  delays  in

 executing  the  contract  pushed  Wexcon’s  start  date  back  and  then  winter  weather  conditions  “hugely”  affected

 the  construction  company’s  ability  to  meet  project  timetables.

Recently  appointed  Authority  VP  Gerard  Maskinas,  with  construction  experience,

 offered  that  Wexcon  could  have  front-loaded  this  project  to

 get  ahead  of  the  deadlines,  but  in  spite  of  a  mild  spring,  the  company  is

 trying  to  catch  up,  without  success. He  thoughtfully  added,  “I  may  be

 wrong,  but  to  my  knowledge  other  than  landscaping,  Wexcon  has  never  requested  approval  to  work  Saturdays,”

 to  get  back  on  schedule.  Council  member  and  Authority  Treasurer

 Ted  Vancosky  blurted,  “

Saturday?  They  don’t  work  on  Fridays.”

Council  President  John  Kochan  added,

 “I  watched  them  all  day  today  and

 they  got  one  lateral  in  – only  one.”

Back  on  agenda  items,  Vancosky  said

 that  he  is  preparing  a  letter  to  send  out  to  property  owners  regarding  tap-in  fees,  and  due  to  delays,  he  said,

 “I’ve  changed  the  date  on  this  a  couple  of  times.’

He  asked  again  if  the  first  stage  of  the  project  will  be  ready

 for  connection  by  August  15th.   Loughran  asserted,  “The  intersection  of  Lake  and  Nuangola  is  what  we  are  concentrating  on  now,  so  we  are  focusing  on  that.  That  includes  the  branch  down  on  Lake,  Raeder,  Vandermark,  Main,  Summit,  Little  Rock,  that  lower  section  of  Willow  Grove  and  Water  Street.  We  plan  on  having  crews  out  to  complete  all  of  the  restoration.”

Vancosky  read  the  draft  of  a  letter  advising  that  owners  are  on  official  notice  that  the  $2,025  tap-in  is  payable  in  full  by  November  30,  2013.  He  indicated  that  penalty  fees  will  be  charged  incrementally  for  failure  to  pay. 

Kochan  took  exception  to  this,  stating  that  only  a  partial  section  would  be  opened,  but  all  property  owners  will  be  billed,  “The  billing  can’t  be  parceled  out  that  way.  It’s  got  to  be  fair  for  everybody.  This  thing  was  never  supposed  to  be  on  a  partial  basis.”

Vancosky  replied,  “This  is  tough.  I’m  caught  in  the  middle  here.  We  are

 going  to  have  a  bill  that  has  to  be

 paid.  We  are  trying  to  save  money  here.  And  we  are  giving  people  almost  until  the  end  of  the  year  to  pay

 this.”  Someone  in  the  audience  muttered,  “Merry  Christmas.”

Maskinas  also  reported  on  his  efforts  to  create  a  simple  guide  for  property

 owners  to  understand  their  responsibility  for  hooking  up.  He  noted

 that  the  owners  need  to  have  electrical  service  from  an  installed  alarm

 box  to  the  home’s  electrical  box,  and  a  pipe  must  be  connected  from  a  stub  on  the  grinder  pump  to  the

 home’s  existing  waste  pipe.  He  said  at  that  point,  the  system  is  active  and  must  be  inspected  before  the  trench  can  be  back-filled.

Under  public  comment,  Kochan  expressed  frustration  with  conditions  around  the  borough’s  roads  and  swales.  He  said  that  from  Main  Street  to

 Vandermark  where  storm  water  that  used  to  drain  along  a  swale,  it  now  disappears  underground  near  a  new  manhole  installation.  “All  of  the  gravel

 installed  up  above  has  washed  down  the  hill.  It’s  all  eroded  and  creating

 its  own  ditch.”

He  continued,  “This  is  something  I’ve  seen  now  in  two  storms.  Everything  on  the  hill  there  is  a  mess,

 everything  is  a  complete  mess.  All

 of  the  gravel  that  they  put  in  on  Little  Rock  Street  is  down  on  Light  Street… The  gravel  is  gouged  out  and  it’s

 gone.”

Fellow  Councilor  and  Roadmaster  Joseph  Tucker  added  his  thoughts  about

 the  finale  of  the  sewer  project.  He

 asked  about  road  restoration  plans,  and  then  assessed  the  final  hook-up  stage  as  problematic.

He  suggested  the  authority  consider  the  property-owner’s  process  about  to

 begin,  “I  think  you  need  to  look  at  the  logistics  of  this.  You  are  going  to  have

 contractors  running  all  over  this  borough  trying  to  hook  400  homes  up  before

 winter,”  he  dryly  concluded.  “ Seems  kind  of  impossible  to  me.”

In  a  subsequent  Special  Meetingheld  on  Monday,  August  5,  theauthority  acted  on  two  USDAmatters,  a  loan  and  a  grant.  Accordingto  Treasurer  Ted  Vancosky,  themeeting  was  needed  to  expedite  theprocess  of  acquiring  the  federal  loan, “We  moved  it  up  a  week  to  get  ourfinancing  in  place.”  He  said  the  grantmoney  will  be  forthcoming,  but  a$ 4.4  million  loan  will  be  tapped  nowto  pay  back  the  ‘bridge’  loan  fromFulton  Bank.    With  invoices  pending, it  was  decided  to  hold  the  specialmeeting  to  advance  the  timing.