Goshen News, Goshen, IN

Local News

April 22, 2013

Sewer board deciding on how to handle three communities

GOSHEN — Three rural sewer problems have county officials pondering what to do about them.

Monday the residents of the Orchard subdivision south of Goshen requested the Elkhart County Storm Water Board help pay for a sewer study. The board also discussed what do about water pollution from septic systems in Southwest and Foraker.

Glenn Stutzman represented a group of residents getting started on the process of having the subdivision hooked up to Goshen’s municipal sewer system. The city’s sewer line ends on Indiana Avenue (C.R. 21) near C.R. 36, which is just a few hundred feet from the subdivision.

Ken Jones Jr. of JPR Engineering has been hired by the resident committee to begin work on studying a sewer system for the subdivision.

Monday, Stutzman asked the Storm Water Management Board, which consists of county commissioners Terry Rodino, Mike Yoder and Frank Lucchese and county Surveyor Blake Doriot, to help fund the study. The board would pay up to $22,000 for the study using money from storm water runoff assessments.

Stutzman said his home’s septic system had to be replaced, as has many others in the subdivision, which got some of the residents thinking about a connection to the city’s system.

In addition to the septic troubles, subdivision resident John Huber asked the board to consider a solution to storm water run off. He said that years ago there were swales alongside the roads in the subdivision to collect rainwater, but many property owners have filled in those swales.

“It they hadn’t done that, I don’t think we would have the issues we do,” Huber said.

Those issues include water running down the roads and damaging the roads as well as water running across property.

Huber said his home’s septic system is working fine.

“I am not as concerned about the sewer issue unless the stormwater issues are addressed,” he said.

Stutzman said the two issues might be linked, as some subdivision residents report sewage odors following rainfalls. He suggested county officials study if runoff from septic systems is going into the nearby Elkhart River.

Doriot said he is in favor of studying the situation, but wondered if the board can legally spend storm water revenue on a sanitary sewer issue. He said the county ordinance is vague on the wording of what the board can spend money on other than storm water problems and water pollution. The board decided to have the county’s attorneys study the issue and make a recommendation.

“I would really like to fund the study if we can do it,” Yoder said.

Stutzman and Jones said that if the Orchard subdivision is hooked up to the city’s sewer and water systems, it’s most likely city officials would require annexation.

Stutzman said he has circulated information to all subdivision residents about the issue and the possibility of annexation and has so far received just a few negative comments.

Jones said he will be making a presentation on the Orchard subdivision issue May 1 to the county’s regional sewer district board.

As far as the storm water runoff issue, Rodino asked County Highway Superintendent Jeff Taylor to give commissioners a cost estimate on having highway crews re-dig the swales along the subdivision roads. Doriot and the commissioners agreed that any such cost can be passed along to property owners who have filled in the drainage swales.

Doriot said, “Now this wouldn’t make people happy, but the highway department has the authority to go in there and cut a swale.”

The board did not take any action on the swales.

Southwest and Foraker

Jones said he sent questionnaires about possible sanitary sewer systems to 73 property owners in the small rural, unincorporated communities of Foraker and Southwest. Thirty-nine responses were received and 28 of those were against the formation of sewer districts and 11 were for such action.

“It is now up to some combination of the storm water board and the county commissioners to determine if they want to do anything.”

The issue involved is surface water pollution to Yellow Creek near Southwest and Weaver Ditch near Foraker. That ditch drains into Dausman Ditch, which then drains into Turkey Creek. A county study found high levels of e coli bacteria in the Weaver Ditch and Yellow Creek. E coli bacteria is used by scientists to monitor organic pollutants, usually from fecal matter.

“We need to act on Foraker for sure,” Doriot said. The reason he said is at least 12 homes in the crossroads community are hooked to a sewer pipe that drains into Weaver Ditch.

“Southwest, I don’t have the data, “ Doriot said. “Foraker I know where the outflow is and it shows who is hooked up. Foraker we have to act on for sure.”

Doriot indicated that in Southwest some locals believe homes are hooked up to a similar system but he has no hard evidence of a sewer pipe’s existence at this time.

“I think either way it is going to end up with the health department,” Yoder said.

“This has to be done,” Yoder said, adding he knows the majority of respondents to the survey were against any action. “But they don’t have any alternative.”

Jones said he believes Foraker and Southwest should be part of one project if county officials go ahead with the effort. He will make a presentation on the issue to the Regional Sewer District Board May 1.

After the meeting Doriot said the idea for a solution to the Foraker and Southwest pollution problem is to create a sewer system that would use septic systems at the home, which would drain into an aerobic digester system, which would then drain into an absorption field.

He said while the technology exists to solve the problem, it’s the economic impact on families he is worried about.

“The problem is, in Foraker the income is low,” he said. “If you are looking at $60 to $80 a month (for sewer bills) that is a lot of money.”

1
Text Only
Local News
  • Hanna Zook A.jpg 9 vie for Distinguished Young Women title MIDDLEBURY — Nine contestants will be competing in Middlebury’s Distinguished Young Women program, formerly known as Middlebury’s Junior Miss program.The theme for this year is “Shine Your Way” and the program will be held at the Northridge High Scho

    July 31, 2014 9 Photos

  • GN140731 Old fashioned farming days 00070.jpg Shipshewana hosts “Old Fashion Farming Days” SHIPSHEWANA — What began 10 years ago as a small exhibition of six or seven farming items dating from the 1800s and 1900s has grown into a yearly festival celebrating the unique histories of more than 400 pieces of antique faming equipment.According

    July 31, 2014 2 Photos

  • NWS GN0731 boys and girls club 01 Boys & Girls Club seeking $1.4M to expand GOSHEN — The Goshen Boys & Girls Club is a bustling place.

    July 30, 2014 2 Photos

  • BIZ GN0730 Growing kids daycare image New day care center will open in August GOSHEN — There’s a Main Street in downtown Goshen and now there’s another, shorter Main Street in Goshen. The new road is located inside the new Growing Kids Learning Center.The newly-built center is located at Elkhart Road and C.R. 17. The day care

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • GN140730 Spore mug Child's death prompts carbon monoxide awareness SYRACUSE — In the wake of the carbon monoxide poisoning death of 12-year-old Skyler Spore, the Syracuse community is raising awareness about the dangers of the deadly gas.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • NWS GN140730 stormwater board Orchard annexation gets $500,000 boost Stormwater board increases contribution toward $7.5 million project

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • GN140730 city council summit 01 Street chief says more money needed to avoid cutting services GOSHEN — The last year has been a particularly rough one for the Goshen Street Department, and the budget for 2015 is likely going to reflect much of that pain in the form of a significant increase in funding requests.

    July 29, 2014 2 Photos

  • Jace Michael Mast TOPEKA — Jace Michael Mast, infant son of Earl and Esther (Lambright) Mast of Topeka, was stillborn at 9:40 p.m. Monday at Dupont Hospital, Fort Wayne. In addition to his parents, he is survived by a brother, Evan Wade Mast, at home; grandparents, Ri

    July 29, 2014

  • nipsco property Construction to close N. Fifth St. for most of a year

    GOSHEN — Motorists who use North Fifth Street should plan to find a new route for the coming year. Monday the Goshen Board of Works and Safety members accepted bids for a North Fifth Street reconstruction project from Clinton Street to Crescent Stree

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • SLIDESHOW: Pets of the Week Cats and dogs looking for loving homes at the Humane Society of Elkhart County. These are the final days of the HSEC's July special: adopt in July and receive 25 percent off your adoption fee for dogs and cats under 5 years old or 50 percent off those 5-years-old or better.

    July 29, 2014 11 Photos

Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Poll

With military action and tensions escalating between Russia and Ukraine, as well as Israel and Palestine, are you worried that the U.S. and other nations may get drawn into these conflicts?

Yes, it is a great concern of mine
I’m a little worried, but not too much
No, I’m not worried at all
     View Results
AP Video
Texas Scientists Study Ebola Virus Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow Southern Accent Reduction Class Cancelled in TN Raw: Deadly Landslide Hits Indian Village Obama Chides House GOP for Pursuing Lawsuit New Bill Aims to Curb Sexual Assault on Campus Russia Counts Cost of New US, EU Sanctions 3Doodler Bring 3-D Printing to Your Hand Six PA Cops Indicted for Robbing Drug Dealers Britain Testing Driverless Cars on Roadways Raw: Thousands Flocking to German Crop Circle At Least 20 Chikungunya Cases in New Jersey Raw: Obama Eats Ribs in Kansas City In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast Raw: Otters Enjoy Water Slides at Japan Zoo NCAA Settles Head-injury Suit, Will Change Rules Raw: Amphibious Landing Practice in Hawaii Raw: Weapons Fire Hits UN School in Gaza Raw: Rocket Launches Into Space With Cargo Ship Broken Water Main Floods UCLA