• November 28, 2014

Killeen council set to vote on water plant payment

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Posted: Monday, March 10, 2014 11:17 pm

The Killeen City Council will vote in its regular meeting today whether to put $5 million down on a water treatment plant and on hiring a firm to execute a solid waste master plan.

The council’s nod would amend the city’s current budget to allow for a $5 million payment up-front on a new water treatment facility on Stillhouse Hollow Lake.

Martie Simpson, the city’s finance director, said by putting capital down up-front, the city will borrow less money when it goes to the bond market to fund the facility, which will accrue less interest.

Simpson said the city’s financial advisers determined an up-front payment is the best option for the city because its water and sewer fund balance is “extremely healthy.”

By putting the money down, the city will avoid accruing capitalized interest — interest incurred during the time it takes to have the facility fully operational.

The facility will add 10 million gallons of treated water per day out of Stillhouse Hollow Lake to the city’s existing 32 million gallons per day from Belton Lake.

The city’s total debt service on the two treatment facilities is a little more than $87 million, which includes existing debt and debt that will be issued on the new facility.

The council also is slated to decide whether to authorize a contract with an engineering firm to execute a solid waste master plan.

Scott Osburn, city public works director, said at a workshop meeting last week that hiring SCS Engineers to develop a solid waste master plan and rate study is the next step in moving forward with the city’s proposed single-stream curbside recycling initiative.

Jeff Arrington, SCS project manager, said the master plan and rate study will address the city’s single-stream initiative, as well as evaluate its existing solid waste programs and develop options for diverting more waste out of the landfill. He said the firm will look at collection impacts, various options for a single-stream program and developing a model for the council to use as a tool when deciding how it wants to implement the program.

The contract will cost the city $140,000, to be paid out of its solid waste fund.

The council also will vote on whether to increase the pay for election workers from $8.50 per hour to $10 per hour.

The meeting will start at 5 p.m. today in council chambers, 101 N. College St.

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