Wakarusa reduces engineering costs

By: 
Mike Siroky
Advance News Editor

In a refreshing change of pace, Wakarusa town engineer James Emans submitted a reduction in pay and hours for the coming  year. It was unanimously approved.
"It's the annual agreement," Emans said. The reduction of hours is after a look at the level of effort I will need to  make next year."
His pay rate is scheduled to be $23,768 for the year.
"We've advanced a lot of the programs to the point staff can handle them. This reduces the fees I will be paid. It's time to adjust what I charge to the town."
Wakarusa is among the many towns and cities across the country following the mandated separation of storm and sanitary sewers, called Combined Sewer Overflow, or CSO in most references.
That's the biggest project in 2015 and it also received a unanimous consent to be advertised and bid out, possible as early as February, which, as Emans pointed out means work can begin in March, "the prime of the start of the construction season."
Emans said Wakarusa has carefully mapped out the separation project for the town and this is the last phase. It is likely covered in the upcoming budget which means no impact on local utility bills.
"This is the end of a long-term project, approved by the Indiana Department of Environmental Management," Emans said.The affected area is between Olive and Union streets, along Wabash. Emans wants to run the storm sewer all the way Wabash. Perhaps an older water main can be eliminated at Elkhart Street.
"The project eliminates known inlets (to the system) and we'll probably discover a few new ones," he said. In the end, the road will be resurfaced and better curbing installed as well.