Versailles Village Council talks electric relocation, water concerns


By Meladi Brewer

VERSAILLES — The Versailles Village Council met Wednesday to discuss rescheduling meetings, electric relocation, and water concerns.

The council discussed the rescheduling of the Nov. 23 Regular Council meeting due to the holiday. Mayor Jeff Subler said this is something they normally do when the meeting falls on the night before Thanksgiving.

“It is so people can travel without having to be stuck in town for the meeting,” Subler said.

The council believed it was in the best interest to just move the meeting forward a day to hold it on Nov. 22 at the normal scheduled time.

A discussion of an electric relocation at the request of Midmark Corporation took place. Assistant Village Administrator Kyle Francis said a couple weeks ago he had spoke about an electric extension request from Midmark for a redundant loop to get them better reliability as a backup, and this project is a new proposal.

“I’ve been working with Midmark on this for the past nine to ten months,” Francis said. “What they are looking to do is, on Greenlawn Avenue, they have put a new concrete apron in and a paved driveway that is going back to their circle in front of the tech center. This is their new main entrance.”

He said Midmark has asked the Village to relocate their existing overhead power lines to underground lines for aesthetic reasons. Francis said this project has nothing to do with reliability nor maintenance, but is purely Midmark wanting them to put them underground for the corporation’s aesthetic purposes.

“We had the discussion, I gave them a cost to do this, and they have agreed to that cost. Due to the time frame they are wanting the project to be completed, it will have to be contracted out,” Francis said.

The project has already started; however, the poles in question not only have the power lines but telecommunication lines: Centurylink, Spectrum, and the Villages Fiber Optic lines, so all those lines will need to be paid for relocation as well.

“Midmark is putting in a lot of money into the landscaping of that front entrance, but they do know they are 100 percent on the line to pay for these improvements because there is no five year payback or additional load. It does not meet the criteria for our ordinance where we would pay anything towards this,” Francis said.

Francis said the Village will have to get an agreement from Midmark stating they agree to all the terms, and they will pay the village back for all costs. Typically, what would be asked is 50 percent of the cost up front and the rest upon completion of the project. By splitting the full payment up, it enables wiggle room for inflation and other hiccups that may happen along the way to ensure the true cost will be covered in the end. In a case where dramatic inflation becomes apparent, the Village and Midmark will have a meeting to discuss the issue at hand in order to come to an understanding and agreement.

Francis also discussed the meeting Village Administrator Mike Busse, Utilities Superintendent Darrin Mumaw, Electronic Foreman Scott Riley, and himself had with AES Ohio Tranmission System Design & Planning personnel on Thursday, Oct. 6 at the Piqua Power Division facility.

“We have been having some discussions with Trey Shepherd with Sawvel & Associates and we will be needing to look at making some adjustments through our power cost providers. Our power supply cost has gone up dramatically,” Francis said.

The PJM footprint has seen record-high prices through a good portion of 2022 due to high costs for natural gas along with continued power congestion fees. Village Administrator Mike Busse will provide further information and recommendation from Sawvel & Associates at the Oct. 26 council meeting.

The Village has issued a voluntary water reduction notice, as Plant Manager Doug Jackson said that the Village’s water production wells are falling off again due to the prolonged dry spell with no meaningful rainfall over the past month plus period.

Francis said the Village is quite yet to have a mandatory water restriction situation, but if good rainfalls do not occur soon with no reduction in water use, the Village will have no choice but to issue a water restriction again.

This past Sunday the water plant ran 17-18 hours to catch the system back up which is far longer than normal for a typical off-peak day. The wells are not pumping their normal rates due to the aquifer being down.

The next Versailles Council meeting will take place Wednesday, Oct. 26, 2021, at 7 p.m., in EMS Building, 320 Baker Road, Versailles.

To contact Daily Advocate Reporter Meladi Brewer, email [email protected].

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