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RSD set to start New Salisbury project

The Harrison County Regional Sewer District last Wednesday morning discussed its recently secured Economic Development Agency grant for the New Salisbury sanitary sewer project and the steps needed before construction can begin sometime next year.
The grant will provide half of the funding for the nearly $2.1 million-project, which will bring sanitary sewer lines to the business corridor at and around the intersection of state roads 64 and 135 in the unicorporated town. The county, the Harrison County Community Foundation and the county’s economic development corporation all have a part in paying the other $1 million-plus.
District board consultant Bob Woosley of Heritage Engineering said, by his best estimate, there will be a $281,000 gap needed to be funded before the project is complete. The board discussed bonding the money when the time comes that it is needed.
Long believed to be a catalyst for economic growth in the area, the project will take flow from the 19 business properties east to the Berkshire wastewater treatment plant. The district board acquired the plant in 2008.
Jill Saegesser with River Hills presented the grant details to the board and will join Woosley, legal counsel Chris Byrd and president Tom Tucker in a meeting in Chicago with EDA representatives. The district has 18 months from September to get started on the project and 45 months to complete it, Saegesser said.
Board member Gary Davis, acting as president at the meeting because of Tucker’s absence, thanked Saegesser for her work with the grant. Last year, Saegesser advised the board to withdraw the EDA grant request because it would give the application a better shot this year.
The district began the push for the system when it learned Schmidt Cabinet Co. had an agreed order from the Indiana Department of Environmental Management to upgrade its waste treatment.
‘Our company has been under an order from IDEM to change our current sewer system,’ John (Callie) Schmidt, owner of Schmidt Cabinet Co., said. ‘We had a new drip system approved by the state, and we were ready to start construction when we were approached with the idea of a new sewer system coming to the New Salisbury area.’
Schmidt said the sewer system could only be put in with the help of the local businesses.
‘While the drip system would have cost us less in the long run than hooking to the sewer system, we understand the importance of getting this new system in place in order for the New Salisbury area to grow.’
Schmidt said, hopefully, in a few years the system will be available to homeowners in New Salisbury.
‘Thanks to the board for working so hard for our small community,’ Schmidt said.
At this time, the district has no plans to open the system to residential properties. If there’s a neighborhood or group of homeowners ‘ anywhere in the county ‘ that wants to discuss bringing sewers to their area, the district welcomes them to do so.
In other business, the board delegated members Darin Duncan, Dan Lee and Tucker to a subcommittee which will decide on an engineering firm to upgrade to the Berkshire plant.
The next RSD meeting will be Wednesday, Nov. 16, at 8:30 a.m. at the Harrison County Community Foundation building in Corydon.