New Market Council receives update about connecting line

By Patrick Fisher

The New Market City Council discussed several items at its Wednesday, Sept. 22, meeting. Among them was an update concerning New Market and Elko and the Metropolitan Council’s wastewater system plan.

Mayor Jim Friedges presented an information only issue about the New Market and Elko Joint Sewer Board becoming part of the Metropolitan Council’s wastewater system plan.

Currently the Metropolitan Council is considering a proposed amendment to its wastewater system plan that would allow communities to become part of its system. The Metropolitan Council Environmental System (MCES) has conducted an engineering study to update the wastewater system plan for the Empire Wastewater Treatment Plant service area. The purpose of the update is to support the efficient, orderly and economic development of the southern metropolitan area. The system plan update defines the areas that potentially can be served by the future expansion of the Empire Wastewater Treatment Plant service area and proposes a staging plan to serve the expanded service area while preserving wastewater capacity to meet the long-term needs of the currently served communities.

The proposed plan modifications include an interceptor extension to Elko-New Market by 2010 and completion of a long-term interceptor to the Empire Wastewater Treatment Plant by 2030. Under the plan the Metropolitan Council will not acquire the Elko-New Market wastewater treatment plant.

The Metropolitan Council will hold a public hearing on the amendment on October 26.

Area Hall sign

The council tabled a discussion about making an addition to the New Market Area Hall sign, located outside of the area hall. The sign was put up over the summer and has an electronic message board, which tells of such things as meeting times.

The proposed addition to the sign is to be under the message board. It would be a sign that says New Market Area Hall. While some members of the council supported the proposal, others felt it was an unneeded expense.

The council agreed to table the discussion until its next meeting when it could receive some guidance from New Market City Administrator Thomas Terry, who was absent from the September 22 meeting.

Halloween event

The council unanimously approved using funds for the annual Halloween party for children. The event is held at the New Market Area Hall on Halloween and it allows children to have fun and receive prizes.

The council approved spending up to $750 for the event, which is taken from the city’s community fund.

Webster Street update

The council was updated about work on Webster Street. The water main line is close to being completed with the storm sewer the next part of the project.

September 8 meeting

The council approved a temporary increase in sewer rates at its September 8 meeting.

Terry said the proposed increases are due in part to the New Market-Elko Joint Sewer Board’s efforts to come into compliance with the plant’s discharge permit. Excess wastewater is being transported by truck at the rate of 90,000 gallons a day, to the Blue Lake Metropolitan Council treatment facility in Shakopee, to lower the levels in the lagoon at the current plant. The 15 loads a day will continue for about two months, Terry said.

The estimated cost for hauling the wastewater is $159,870. The temporary increase of $21.73 per month will be in effect from October, 2004 through May, 2005.

The council set a preliminary budget levy of $439,194 for 2005, an increase of 23.3 percent.

The levy will be discussed at the city’s Truth in Taxation hearing, which was set for Monday, Dec. 6.

The council also set a second regular monthly meeting, to be held the fourth Wednesday of each month at 7:30 p.m.

Kurt Kaiser was appointed to a vacancy on the New Market Planning Commission.

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