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Suamico board approves well treatment plan

By Ben Rodgers

SUAMICO – The Suamico village board approved moving forward with a $50,000 project to rehabilitate well No. 2 in the village at its Monday, Dec. 3 meeting.

Andy Smits, director of public works, said the well has high levels of biofilm, which increases radium levels.

“What we’re proposing, to kind of use well No. 2 since it’s currently shut down, using that as a pilot project with newer technology to improve and clean and disinfect that well down below, similar to opening the top of a well and pouring a gallon of bleach down it,” Smits said.

He said what CTW Corporation will be doing is run a 2-inch conduit down the well and then inject chlorine into the water supply.

The majority of the cost will go for mobilization and set up, Smits said, while each year the village could choose to treat the well again for roughly $10,000.

CTW’s letter to Smits, which was included in the packet for the meeting, noted the biofilm, a yellowish slime material “is very similar to the consistency of the nasal discharge we have when we have a cold.”

“Were proposing to do this project at well No. 2 and if it’s successful, which we anticipate it will be, we will jump over to well No. 3 once well No. 2 has a sufficient amount of quality water the DNR approves, and turn it back online,” Smits said.

Well No. 2 went offline in November 2017 due to high radium levels, possibly caused by the biofilm bacteria, he said.

Smits also noted the pumping capacity for well No. 3 tested at 700 gallons per minute recently, which is below what he hoped for.

“We’re very confident that this will be a solution, and if we use it on No. 2 and No. 3 and get them online, there’s a possibility of using it on well No. 4 and getting that back online,” said Steve Kubacki, village administrator.

Included in the $50,000 price tag for well No. 2 is also the cost of working with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.

The money is set to come from utility impact fees, Smits said, so the water utility tax rate will not increase.

In other news, during closed session, Kubacki made recommendations to the board for pay increases for some village staff.

He would not go into any specifics about the raises, because discussion occurred in closed session and no action was taken coming out of closed session.

Also in closed session, Kubacki went over the search for his replacement.

He announced earlier this year his intent to retire.

A number of consulting firms have submitted proposals for finding the next village administrator.

The board will discuss those proposals more in-depth at a future meeting.

Kubacki does not have a set date for when he will leave his position with the village.

“It’ll be when it makes sense for the village board and myself,” he said. “I will say it will be sometime in the summer of 2019 and it all depends on how quickly and comfortable the board feels in selecting a replacement. I’m going to be flexible and the board is going to be flexible and we will make decisions that will be in the best interest of the village.”

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