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THE CITY REBORN FROM THE ASHES OF AMERICA'S MOST DISASTROUS FOREST FIRE
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BPM Wastewater Unit To Open In November

Issue Date: November 17, 2021

BPM. Inc. General Manager Jim Koronkiewicz informed the Peshtigo Water and Sewer Committee at a brief meeting on Thursday, Nov. 11 that construction on the mill's wastewater treatment facility is proceeding on schedule. Koronkiewicz said the facility is half full of fresh water, testing is underway, and plans are in place to disconnect the mill from the city's wastewater treatment facility by the end of November.

Koronkiewicz had asked to be on the Water and Sewer committee meeting agenda with an update on the water resource recovery facility startup, an update from the city on abandonment and/or removal of the city's sanitary sewer line from BPM, Inc property, an update from the city on wastewater treatment plant sludge disposal by the city and how it affects the user's cost structure, and an update on the status of the utility's payment to BPM for invoice No. 120 dated Oct. 25, 2021.

In the Sept. 9 letter, Koronkiewicz said it was a follow-up to a letter sent to the city on March 16. "To date, BPM has received no substantive correspondence from the city," the letter stated.

"At this time, BPM reiterates the position it stated in that letter demanding that the City of Peshtigo remove the sanitary sewer line that crosses the BPM/ARATH properties. The City of Peshtigo has neither an easement nor permission to maintain these sanitary sewer facilities on BPM/ARATH properties," the letter began.

The letter went on: "As the construction of our Water Resource Recovery Facility continues, it will be within the next 35 to 45 days that our discharge effluent line will intersect with the City Sanitary Sewer line (river crossing). BPM expects the sewer line to be removed or properly abandoned before that date. We will keep the city informed of this progress.

"As compensation for the use of the BPM/ARATH properties, attached is the invoice for the period April 1, 2021 to September 30, 2021. $72,350/month X 6 = $434,100."

Koronkiewicz' letter concluded with a request for a timely response, and a statement that if no agreement is reached, invoicing will continue quarterly going forward and if not paid the the amount will be deducted from City's invoices to BPM for its account.

At the Nov. 11 meeting, Koronkiewicz repeated his question as to what will happen with the city in regard to the BPM invoice. He said BPM, Inc. owner Jim Azaar had been in Peshtigo on Tuesday, and said he is moving ahead with his attorneys in regard to collecting the $434,100 for use of the BPM/ARATH properties by the city utility.

Water and Sewer Committee Chair Tom Gryzwa said the utility's attorneys had advised them not to discuss or make comments on these issues at this time, and the brief discussion with Koronkiewicz was ended.

Present for the meeting in addition to Koronkiewicz and Gryzwa were Committee Members Dan Seymour and Fred Meintz, Mayor Cathi Malke, Aldermen Rick Berth and Katie Berman, and engineering consultant Taryn Nall. Nall very briefly updated the committee on grants and/or low interest loans available for water and sewer projects. Public Works Director George Cowell was absent.

The open portion of the meeting lasted only 10 minutes, after which the committee went into closed door discussion on two items - the "Town of Peshtigo Water Supply," and "Wastewater Treatment/Sewer and PFAS related issues."

There was no action taken after the meeting returned to open session before adjournment and no information was provided on what had been discussed in closed session.


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