MEETING MINUTES OF THE
PLUM CREEK MUNICIPAL AUTHORITY
A regular meeting of the Board of The Plum Creek Municipal Authority was held on February 4, 2014 at the Plum Creek Municipal Authority Business Office Building, South Manheim Township, Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania.
Board members present at the meeting were Jim Ridderhoff, Tom Nagle, Jerry Weiss, and Matt Gruber. Also in attendance were Dave Bright (PCMA Engineer), Joe Zerbe (PCMA Attorney), and Mike Stewart (PCMA Operations Manager).
Jim Ridderhoff called the meeting to order at 5:00 p.m.
The first item of business was reorganization. Upon motion by Jim Ridderhoff, seconded by Matt Gruber, and carried by all, the officer positions for 2014 are: Jim Ridderhoff – Treasurer & Co-Chairman, Jerry Weiss – Secretary & Co-Chairman, Tom Nagle – Assistant Secretary & Co-Chairman, and Dennis Scharadin – Co-Chairman. It was also noted that Matt Gruber was reappointed to the PCMA Board for a 5-year term.
The minutes of the prior meeting held in November, 2013 were reviewed and accepted by motion of Tom Nagle, seconded by Matt Gruber, carried by all.
The Treasurer's reports for November 2013 and December 2013 were reviewed and accepted by motion of Tom Nagle, seconded by Matt Gruber, carried by all.
Upon motion by Tom Nagle, seconded by Matt Gruber, carried by all, the accounting firm of Jones & Co. was reappointed for the year 2014 to perform the 2013 audit of the Authority.
Upon motion by Matt Gruber, seconded by Tom Nagle, carried by all, the engineering firm of The SSM Group was reappointed for the year 2014.
Upon motion by Tom Nagle, seconded by Jerry Weiss, carried by all, the legal firm of Derenzo and Zerbe was reappointed for the year 2014.
Upon motion by Jerry Weiss, seconded by Matt Gruber, carried by all, Hauptly Insurance was reappointed as the insurance agent for the year 2014.
The 2014 Budget was prepared by Jim Ridderhoff and distributed to all members prior to the meeting. Upon motion by Jerry Weiss, seconded by Matt Gruber, carried by all, the 2014 budget was approved and adopted.
Mike Stewart reviewed his written report relating to managerial matters (submitted to the Board prior to the meeting) which addressed water and sewage operations. In water matters, he reported that:
In sewage matters, Mike reported that:
- Major leaks developed during the extremely cold weather, evidenced by a considerable drop in the water storage tanks, and leak detection is currently in progress.
- Breiner Contracting is standing by to start repairing the water system leaks as soon as locations are identified. PCMA personnel will help to determine whether the leaks are on property owners’ service lines or if they’re on the PCMA’s system lines.
Mike Stewart said that 2 of the water leaks that were found have been repaired, but 4 others were found over the weekend by Dave Bonkovich and Dan Smaglinski. The leaks in the system have put the water tank levels near critical stage. Leak repairs are scheduled to start on Thursday, February 6th. Mike added that leaks needed to be found and repaired as quickly as possible so there was adequate time for the storage tanks to fill up again before the repainting project begins.
- Both pump trucks are currently operational.
- The Red Mack pump truck has been sold and taken from the premises by the buyer.
In engineering matters, Dave Bright said applications were submitted to the PA DEP for the storage tank repainting project, and the permits were received with minor amendments. He said the project manual for the purpose of receiving bids had been prepared. He asked Joe about some legal questions about not having to use prevailing wages for the project (because it’s classified as maintenance work), and Joe said he would check into it right away, although he didn’t think prevailing wages applied in this case. Another question Dave had concerned arbitration in the case of disputes. After discussing the matter, the Board and Joe Zerbe opted for going to court rather than arbitration in the case of disputes. The question regarding whether or not environmental insurance coverage was needed, and it was determined that it was not needed for this project.
The sequence of work was discussed, and it was determined that the small tank would be painted first followed by the larger tank. Advertisements for bids would be submitted within the next week with the bid opening set for February 28, 2014. After the bids are opened, Jim Ridderhoff will apply for financing for the project. Dave will review the received bids for accuracy, and Joe Zerbe will review them for legal reasons. Dave told Mike that a lot of trees and heavy foliage will have to be removed in and around the area prior to the start of the painting. The actual start of the project will most likely begin sometime in mid-April when the temperatures are more ideal for painting, with completion scheduled for July.
Upon motion by Jim Ridderhoff, seconded by Matt Gruber, and carried by all, advertisement for bids was authorized as soon as Dave can submit the paperwork to the newspaper, with the bids to be opened on February 28, 2014 at the PCMA Business Office.
Jerry asked what the rest of the Board thought about informing the public that water may be restricted during the repainting process because only one storage tank will be in use, and conservation may be necessary. Dave agreed that it was a legitimate concern, and the Board agreed. Jen said she would get a notice together to inform customers of the repainting project, and that the PCMA will be asking for voluntary water conservation during the process. Customers will also be asked to keep the water situation in mind when planning their own projects (such as landscaping and installing swimming pools) that may require water, as water may be limited and may not be sufficiently available until after the painting project has been completed and the storage tanks have had time to refill. In addition, the PCMA has to make sure that adequate water is available for fire protection. Jen said she can do a special mailing to inform the customers or include the information in the next water billing which will be mailed in April.
In legal matters, Joe Zerbe said he addressed routine matters such as filing & satisfying liens, and advertising the February make-up meeting but, other than that, he said he had nothing to report.
Mike asked the Board to consider an additional sewage pumping charge for customers who had septic tank lids located inside a riser at various depths. He said pumps in those situations always required two people to be there to get the lid out and put it back in again and, in some instances, 3 people were required. Mike said the lids were sometimes off-center and others are very deep, and one person doing the pump can’t get the lid off and out to do the pump. He said it was also dangerous for everyone concerned. Jerry asked if there was a reason for the tanks to be that way. Mike said there was not, and that some people just do it that way because they think it cuts down on odor. Mike said it doesn’t, and he’s been successful in getting some people to change it but others won’t do it.
Upon motion by Tom Nagle, seconded by Jerry Weiss, and carried by all an extra $50 pumping charge was approved for septic tanks that have lids on the tank inside the riser that need to be removed and replaced in order to pump the tank.
The current municipal pickup truck was discussed because it’s beginning to be cost prohibitive to keep it on the road. The Board discussed different options for looking into purchasing another one. As far as specs go, Matt suggested it should be at least a 3/4-ton, 4-wheel drive pickup truck with the capability of handling the plow in the winter. Mike suggested keeping the old truck as a spare in case the new one is in the shop, and for use in meter reading. He said it would be adequate for that, and it really wouldn’t be worth anything as a trade-in. Upon motion by Jerry Weiss, seconded by Tom Nagle, and carried by all, Jim was appointed to start the search for a another pickup truck at a cost under $10,300. Jim said he will keep in touch with Matt and Mike as to any questions he might have as he looks for another one.
The PCMA moved its financial concerns to Riverview Bank last year, but there is a small amount of funds still in two accounts with Sovereign Bank (now Santander Bank). Jim told Jen to contact the bank to find out what needs to be done to close out the accounts. A new Resolution was needed to be in place for selected Board members to conduct financial business on behalf of the PCMA because the one on file is outdated. Upon motion by Jim Ridderhoff, seconded by Jerry Weiss, and carried by all, a new Resolution was approved and adopted for the purpose of conducting financial matters and business decisions on behalf of the PCMA. The Resolution was signed at the meeting by all Board members indicated on the form, and by Secretary, Jerry Weiss.
There being no further business, Matt Gruber motioned for adjournment, Jim Ridderhoff seconded the motion, carried by all. The meeting was adjourned by Jim Ridderhoff at 6:08 pm.
Meeting minutes were taken, prepared, and submitted by Jennifer Hoy.