DES Winnipesaukee River Basin Program Adopts 10-Year Capital Improvement Plan
Concord, NH - The Winnipesaukee River Basin Program (WRBP) Advisory Board voted unanimously to adopt its first comprehensive Capital Improvements Plan (CIP). The CIP is a result of work performed by the WRBP Advisory Board and its CIP Subcommittee, in partnership with New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services (DES) WRBP Staff.
The WRBP is a state owned and operated regional sanitary sewer system. Its facilities and infrastructure include an extensive sewer collection system, 14 pumping stations and the Franklin Wastewater Treatment Plant. The system was constructed in the late 1970’s and serves ten member communities and one state agency. The program provides sewer disposal for an estimated 14,500 sewer hookups/connections throughout the Lakes Region including commercial, residential, industrial and municipal customers. These customers, also known as ratepayers, support the WRBP by providing the revenue necessary to maintain and operate the entire system and to fund the replacement of capital items by means of sewer fees which are charged by each member community to its customers.
The WRBP CIP is in its first edition and will be reviewed and updated annually by the WRBP Staff and the Advisory Board’s CIP Subcommittee, prior to its re-adoption by the WRBP Advisory Board. The CIP ranks Capital Projects having a dollar value of $50,000 or greater by their priority in relationship to other identified projects over a 10-year projection period.
The Subcommittee will also be involved with augmenting the CIP to include a more thorough evaluation of the WRBP sewer pumping stations and its 65 miles of interceptor pipe. Additional tasks that the WRBP Staff and the CIP Subcommittee will be conducting in 2012 include a review of the ongoing Flow Metering and Rate Study Project and developing the scope of the proposed WRBP Operations, Management and Administration Evaluation.
Over the past several years, the WRBP has replaced several major components at the Franklin wastewater plant. This has been necessary because, at thirty plus years old, much of the WRBP infrastructure, facilities and equipment are nearing the end of their useful life. The CIP helps to ensure that a deliberative review process is in place whereby priority projects proceed in an orderly fashion so as not to unexpectedly affect sewer rates. It will be a working document and valuable tool which will assist NHDES, WRBP Staff and the member communities long into the future.
In reflecting on the value of the CIP document, Paul Moynihan, Laconia’s Director of Public Works, who currently serves as Chairman of the Advisory Board and as Laconia’s representative said; “The work of the CIP Subcommittee over the past year and the resulting 10-year plan has done much to promote confidence among the WRBP member communities. With the increased pressure we’re all feeling regarding sewer rates, adherence to this plan brings us assurance that Program costs will be well managed and implemented in both a timely and a fiscally responsible way”.
For more information on the Capital Improvements Plan or to obtain a copy of the document, please contact your Sewer Provider or the NHDES WRBP. Other information relating to the WRBP can be found on the NHDES website at http://des.nh.gov/organization/divisions/water/wrbb/index.htm.
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