01/12/09 — Wayne County OKs water, methane deals

View Archive

Wayne County OKs water, methane deals

By Steve Herring
Published in News on January 12, 2009 1:46 PM

Contracts for a joint water venture with the Eastern Wayne Sanitary District and another to allow a company to capture methane gas at the landfill were approved last week by the Wayne County Board of Commissioners.

Both contracts had been before the board for several months, but had been delayed by ongoing contract negotiations.

The water contract had been scheduled for the board's Dec. 16 session, but was tabled after commissioners raised questions, including the location and ownership of an $800,000 water tank.

It was at the same meeting that commissioners announced their intentions of entering into a 20-year contract with Wayne MP, LCC. The company plans to use the gas at the landfill to create electricity.

That contract, too, was delayed until last week so that some remaining questions could be ironed out.

The county will utilize $1 million in grants and $290,000 in local money to build the 500,000-gallon elevated water tank at Park East. It will also install a 12-inch water line loop on the city's water system and Eastern Wayne will pay $1.065 million to install a 12-inch water line extension through the industrial park.

The improvements, for fire protection purposes only, are part of the county's commitment to an incentive package that landed AAR Corp. at the industrial park.

The water contract calls for the county to turn control over to the water district after one year. Some commissioners had questioned whether or not the county should retain ownership and lease it to the district.

The board decided it would be best to give it to the water district since the county does not have a water system.

Commissioners said ownership of the water line loop will transferred to the city as well.

Meanwhile, final approval of the contract with Wayne MP LLC is contingent on the resolution of the wording detailing the meets and bounds of the property and establishing who will be responsible for monitoring additional wells that will have to be sunk to extract the gas.

The company will locate its equipment on property at the landfill.

The county will receive an initial payment of $20,000 and thereafter will receive $100 per month for the lease and 3.5 percent of the company's gross revenue from the landfill project. The lease is for 20 years.

The county was not required to hold a public hearing on the contract. However, the length of the lease required that commissioners make public their intentions which they did at their Dec. 16 meeting.

In other business, commissioners declared three vacant lots as surplus property and gave them to the city to be used by the YouthBuild construction initiative.

Smith said that the lots, located at 518-520 Olivia Lane and 901 Greenleaf Road were small residential lots.

Commissioners questioned giving the property up, but Smith said that had been the county's policy in the past.

The Olivia Lane property is valued at $5,340 and the Greenleaf property at $2,870. The Olivia Lane property was jointly owned with the city.

The YouthBuild project is part of the Smart Choices for Youth organization.

Smith said he was unsure what the project would consist of, but that it appeared to be home construction.