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Local News

New Lenox seeks $19 million state loan for waste water project

NEW LENOX – New Lenox's long-planned, multimillion dollar expansion plans for waste water treatment plant No. 2 continue, with the village seeking a loan from the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency.

Village trustees Monday night approved an agreement with Chicago-based engineering firm AECOM to prepare and submit an engineering proposal to the IEPA for the $19 million project to secure a loan that would save the village thousands of dollars in interest payments.

The village will pay AECOM a little more than $13,000 for the engineering plans for the loan application. But it expects to save "tens of thousands if not hundreds of thousands of dollars" if it acquires the low-interest loan, compared to the interest it would pay if it goes to the bond market to pay for the project, Village Administrator Kurt Carroll said.

AECOM completed and submitted project engineering and bid documents to New Lenox last year. The new proposal is only for the loan application, Carroll said.

To date, the village has paid AECOM $651,912 for all design and permitting related services for the project, according to Public Works Director Brian Williams.

The project's cost is estimated at $18 million for the expansion and about $900,000 in engineering fees, Williams said.

The village started planning the expansion almost 10 years ago, but it had to be put on hold due to the recession, he said. With economic conditions improving, the village started moving forward with the plans a few years ago.

Expansion plans include doubling the size of the current plant, with the average volume of water running through the facility increasing from 732,000 gallons to 1.5 million gallons daily, according to Williams.

Other improvements include adding more primary and secondary treatment, upgrading final filtration and building an upgraded facility to process and store biosolids removed from the sewage, he said.

Farmland purchased, annexation considered

In other action, trustees formally approved the purchase of a portion of farmland at Nelson and Spencer roads for $35,000 as part of its plans to expand and realign Nelson Road between West Haven Road and West Illinois Highway.

The village still plans to purchase farmland between West Haven Road and West Illinois Highway before extension plans can proceed, Carroll said.

Also, the village is considering an annexation proposal by Winslow Ventures for about 2 acres of residential property south of Joliet Highway, between Western and Wisconsin roads.

Two homes are located on that property. The developer has proposed building five more homes on the existing lots.

As part of the agreement, the village would reduce Winslow's impact fees by 50 percent, to about $8,000, and the developer would make improvements on the sidewalk intersections of Western Avenue and West Joliet Highway, Western Avenue and Lexington Road, and Wisconsin Road and West Joliet Highway.

The agreement is scheduled for a vote at the next Village Board meeting.

Mayor Tim Baldermann announced that there will be a free, two-hour severe weather and tornado spotter training course at 7 p.m. April 21 at Lincoln-Way West High School, immediately following the health and safety fair scheduled for 5 p.m.

Interested parties can register at 815-723-1455.

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