The meeting took place in the small conference room due to HVAC construction. All trustees were in attendance in person or via phone or video conferencing.
Board of Trustees meeting: FY 23 officers were unanimously re-elected and consent agenda passed unanimously.
Investment Committee meeting: Investments are getting higher interest rates 2.06% for T Bills. Off setting that is greatly increased costs for chemicals and electricity. Stock market being up means the pension fund is significantly better which impacts the budget positively. The PPRT (Personal Property Replacement Taxes) revenue is also up significantly and is used for capitol projects.
Finance: The State of Illinois has many past due GPSD bills. Still working with utility billing software which would need to interact with IL American Water usage data. GPSD is using Cyber security software.
Operations: There were no violations, no backups. They received a Peak Performance Award for the second year. GPSD is ahead of regulations regarding phosphorus using biological removal – 80% reduction. One of two “screw pumps” went out and they are dealing with it as an internal maintenance project. (They also have a backup pump.) Of note nearby but downstream is the high Kickapoo Creek phosphorus level which is due to farm fields and residential septic systems. Also contributing can be stream erosion. There is a Bradley student summer study going on.
Construction & Planning: new residential connections are up this year. Approved $60,699 change order to a sewer lining project which needed bypass pumping and included unexpected pipe failures.
GPSD will participate in an Illinois watershed study group.
Ameren may want an old landfill site that GPSD owns for a community solar project. However there was discussion about the degraded panels at the end of panel life including heavy metals.
The Audit will be reviewed at the July meeting.
Cheryl Budzinski, Observer
All Trustees attended either in person or virtually. The Investment Committee Meeting report- the $5-6million dollars will be laddered for needed times, but rates are still very low.
The Board of Trustees Meeting had one guest whose volunteer work for the St Vincent de Paul society at a local church led her to ask that the GPSD bills also be sent to renters. Currently only the owners receive the bill from GPSD. But utilities may be the renters’ responsibility. When a notice finally does come to the renter it is a notice of approaching water shutoff and may be hundreds of dollars overdue. GPSD is aware of this and is looking into solutions, but extremely low-income households may not have a computer or internet access for electronic bills. Staff pointed out that GPSD has a link on their website to Low Income Household Water Assistance Program (LIHWAP) which is a partial one-time solution.
· The public hearing on the 2022-23 Budget will be on Tuesday April 18. Afterwards the trustees will vote on the budget. Fuel and chemical expenses are much higher now which is reflected in the budget.
· Two employees were promoted from within to new positions and two interns are budgeted.
· GPSD has applied for a FEMA BRIC grant to cover 70% of their Levee Improvements Project. The project involves changing the height and slope of the levee which surrounds the GPSD plant, relocation of the maintenance garage, Kickapoo Interceptor Control Structure, and Effluent Channel Control Structure. This project is needed to meet the FEMA requirement for a 100-year flood event. Flooding has increased and on one occasion when the river reached 29 feet, employees had to take a boat to get to the plant.
· There were no overflows in February in the GPSD system. There was one combined sewer discharge on February 16 with .73inches of rain in the city owned combined water/sewer system.
· There were no sanitary sewer backups in February within the District-owned sanitary sewer collection system.
· A six-year generator maintenance agreement was approved to maximize the service life of their emergency standby generators.
· Trustees thanked staff for participation in an ongoing national sewage tracking project described in a Saturday March 12 Peoria Journal Star article: Sewage might track down next COVID-19 outbreak (by Leslie Renken) https://peoriajournalstar-il.newsmemory.com?selDate=20220312&goTo=A01&artid=3
Cheryl Budzinski, Observer
GPSD Trustees participated in person and online. That option was open to the public also. Staff and Trustees were welcoming to have an Observer.
Their website was very helpful finding the location, time, date, how to participate online or in person. Also from their website https://www.gpsd.org/
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