WESTFIELD - While it might just seem like waste to some, it may have reusable nutrients for others.
Two brothers, Jere Northrup and Jon Northrup, are looking to demonstrate their Timberfish Project will save municipalities money. Along with Aaron Resnick, executive director of the Westfield Development Corporation, they brought their proposal in front of the Westfield Village Board of Trustees at its meeting on Monday, Oct. 15.
The project hopes to recycle and reuse nutrients and materials often considered as waste products. One of the applications is to treat municipal wastewater, and the Northrups want to demonstrate this using the Westfield Wastewater Treatment Plant as an example.
"We believe we showed substantial cost avoidance so that ... this could be applied and could save Westfield significant amounts of money," Jere Northrup said.
The project will be totally self-funded at no cost to Westfield. All the project would require from the village is roughly 10 percent of its waste sludge and some land to place their tanks. The board passed the motion unanimously.
"I think it's a win-win situation for both the village and those people who are promoting it," Village of Westfield Mayor David Carr, who had heard the presentation before, said. "I wish you good luck."
The board also heard from Senior Water Plant Operator Wayne Cardy about the control board for the water plant frying circuit recently. A replacement circuit was found in California and the water plant received it in less than 24 hours of the issue, however the board dates back to 1995, so replacement parts are scarce.
Therefore, three replacements were purchased out of the possible last 42 in existence, and Cardy brought up it might be time to start looking into updating the outdated system.
In other business, a $100 deposit fee for using Ottaway Park will begin being collected on Memorial Day 2013 and a sign stating "Park is closed during reserved events" will be posted. This change was made due to problems with vandalism and users leaving trash behind.
The village has applied for the Justice Court Grant. If the grant is awarded, the village would use the money for new computer equipment for its court.
The board approved timbering on the Robbins, Mann and Beadle tracts of the village's watershed property. This is a process the village has been doing for years, and Carr said it will not affect the nature of the property.
The board approved waiving the 30 day municipal notification requirement as requested by Robert Heil, Liquor License Consultant to Brazill's, the new restaurant at 5-7 E. Main St., where Sapore's used to be. Brazill's is looking to serve liquor, beer and wine.
Finally, the board approved for $69,464 in unpaid village taxes to be sent to the county.
The board also approved a request for DOBRA continuation coverage for Karel Hamilton and a bond resolution to finance the Woodrig Reservoir PRV and the Westside Pumpstation Improvement projects. The reservoir project is estimated to cost $600,000 while the pumpstation project is estimated to cost $300,000.
During the board's meeting on Monday, Sept. 17, the board approved the purchase of radios from the fire department's capital reserve fund as well as purchases for the pumpstation project on condition there was enough money in the fund.
Also at the September meeting, the board approved the purchase of a new Dueco truck for the electric department to replace the truck damaged by a fire on June 30. Electric Superintendent William Boneberg said the department had the truck currently and was trying it out, and if he had to go to bid, it is the same exact truck he would ask for, but it would take six to eight months in that case.
For the fire-damaged truck, the village received the actual cash value of $152,000 from the insurance company as well as $5,000 for ruined tools. The new truck, which was able to be purchased without going out to bid based on a new law which went into effect on Aug. 1 where a municipality can piggy-back on the bid request of a company, the National Joint Power Alliance, that does so on a national basis, will cost the village $180,205.
At the beginning of the October meeting, Carr read a prepared statement he said was in response to a letter to the editor printed in this paper on Sept. 20 titled "Fire department needs safe boat." In his statement, Carr described the budgeting process for the Westfield Volunteer Fire Department and gave a background on purchases for the department since 2005.
"During the budget process both the village and the town contribute extra funds to an Equipment Reserve account," Carr said in his statement. "These funds are set aside to accumulate for the purpose of purchasing new vehicles which are extremely expensive."
He went on to specify how much money the village paid and how much money grants paid toward various equipment purchased between 2005 and the present. Carr said he made the statement because he felt the letter to the editor made it sound as though grants paid for all of the fire department's equipment and he wanted to point out the village's contribution as well.
At the end of the October meeting, trustee Dave Brooker read a statement regarding an incident which occurred just prior to the close of last month's meeting. He said he was extremely disappointed by the conduct of a member of the audience.
"I cannot condone a verbal attack on a member of the public who is expressing his or her opinion to another person," Brooker said. "In the past, our Village Board of Trustees has listened to opinions and comments with an attitude of civility and respect. We will continue to treat all members of our community who attend our meetings with such respect and will expect that all who do attend these meetings will also conduct themselves accordingly."
Brooker then immediately moved to adjourn into executive session and a vote by the board was taken before the public comment portion of the meeting was made available to those in attendance. Public comment occurred only because an audience member brought up that it had been skipped.