Inspectors confirmed late last week that the sewer line, constructed by BTI and expected to be purchased by the city, running under U.S. 54 is in need of further repair.
“We ran a television camera through it and there are still some concerns about the drainage through the line,” said Interim City Administrator Jay Newton. “It’s got a slump under the highway, so it does not have good flow. When the line fills up with water and sewage, it does not drain out the other end, except as a trickle. The line has got to flow because it drains the entire industrial park. It will have to be fixed, otherwise every two weeks someone will have to go out and flush the line.”
Newton says the recent repair BTI has done to the line has not corrected the problem.
Prior to inspection last week it appeared that the “handshake” deal, which originated in 2008 under previous city administrator Steve Hewitt, was all but complete.
Newton confirmed that BTI had submitted a formal annexation request and an item on Monday night’s city council agenda requesting approval of the annexation of BTI, was tabled due to the discovery.
Newton described the extent of the repairs needed as “major” and reiterated that the city and BTI are in constant contact about the problem and working towards a solution.
“I felt a bit bad [when we found the sag] because I think BTI has acted in good faith all the way through this,” said Newton.
The deal had been so close to completion that the city had even cut a check for the $103,500 purchase price, in anticipation of the council’s vote on Monday.
“There are issues we still need to resolve,” said Mike Estes of BTI. ”The functioning ability of the line is the only hang-up. That’s what we are trying to resolve with the city and we’re trying to determine that if [what we have done] is not fixing it, what is the next step. We’ll continue to work on it.”