Water plant costs to be high
The Cheswick Council is significantly underestimating the costs of refurbishing the borough's defunct water-treatment plant.
My preliminary estimate indicates that refurbishing and operating the water plant will cost at least $5.5 million over the next 15 years — about $1.7 million of that for capital costs, including engineering, equipment and storage tanks.
This would require a loan, which may not be available.
To cover the costs, the water price for Cheswick's 800-plus residential customers will be at least $7.60 per 1,000 gallons. This does not include any additional costs due to requirements from the state Department of Environmental Protection or emergency situations that may arise.
Resurrecting the water plant appears to be the highest cost option available.
For comparison, had the current council approved purchasing water from neighboring Oakmont, the price would have been closer to $5.60 per 1,000 gallons, less than the approximately $7 per 1,000 we're currently paying for water from Harmar.
These are preliminary estimates, but they point out the continuing need for better planning and assessment by our council to provide Cheswick residents the best quality water — at the most affordable price — over the long term.
Paul P. Jack
The writer is a civil engineer and a former Cheswick councilman.
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments â either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.