RIDGWAY TOWNSHIP--A company from the south is currently working on the new Johnsonburg Water plant and has offered its services to the Ridgway Township Municipal Authority (RTMA) for ongoing maintenance.
Water tank maintenance, including painting the enormous steel tanks and cleaning the interior, is generally bid out to contractors when the RTMA's work crews notify the board about specific issues. Exterior maintenance such as repairing the tanks can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars but generally only has to be done every 5-10 years. Currently, one of the companies that are assisting the Johnsonburg Municipal Authority has submitted a bid price for a multi-year contract that could, in the long run, save the RTMA thousands of dollars. Under consideration by the RTMA board, the Authority's engineer, Brian Shura of Stiffler, McGraw, and Associates Inc, suggested reaching out to an additional company, also from the southern US, to submit a bid so that the board members could compare prices and levels of service. Shura was given the Authority to reach out to the additional company, secure a bid, and produce a report for the RTMA to decide upon entering into a contract at the September meeting. At that meeting, it was decided to move forward with the contract after allowing the RTMA's Attorney, Matt Taladay, to look over the contract. At the meeting on Thursday evening, the board decided to approve the contract, specifying that it is for maintenance and not construction. The vote of the board was unanimous.  
The Work crew of the RTMA has been busy for the last month trying to secure the entire system for the coming winter months. Lawn care was completed at all of the RTMA sites. A new water meter pie was installed at the Bever residence in the Township. Water Service was restored to a home on Mapleview Drive after a broken water service tap was discovered. In addition, new water and sewer taps were installed along Clearview Drive. All property owners at the Fairmont Development were sent letters announcing that the low-pressure sewer project is compiled, and interested landowners should contact the RTMA if they wish to have service. The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) completed a water supply inspection of the entire system on October 7. No significant deficiencies were discovered, and the inspector pointed out minor issues, such as some labeling on pipes and a specific sticker missing from some chemicals, which were quickly remedied. 
The RTMA Municipal has maintained a savings account for almost three years due to a disagreement with the Ridgway Borough over a surcharge still being assigned on the water bills. This is regarding an EDU surcharge designated for many years on the water bills to defray the costs of building the new plant in Ridgway Borough. Almost three years ago, the Authority directed their solicitor, Attorney Matt Taladay, to inquire from the borough why the surcharge was still in place while the loan had been paid off. The Authority met with Ridgway Borough several times regarding this outstanding issue, and no resolutions to the problem were forthcoming in any of the meetings. In the meantime, the RTMA has not been paying the bills directly to the borough but has deposited the money in an escrow account until there is a resolution to this dispute. The Authority Board has voted every month for almost two years to have their solicitor contact the borough to resolve this issue. Currently, the Borough bill is over $300,000, which includes a 10% delinquent fee that the Authority disputes as well. The escrow fund now stands at $530,226.97 No report was received from Taladay this month, just his invoice, so the RTMA is delaying paying the bill until they receive the report they have requested for several months.
Under financial reports, total disbursements for the month totaled $78,784.47 with deposits of $76,780.36 and a beginning balance of $201,354.27, leading to a decrease in funds of $2,004.11 and an ending balance of $199,350.16 in the general account.
 Under operations and engineering, 52 delinquent letters were mailed out for the October bills with seven shut-off notices. Currently, one customer is shut-off for nonpayment of a considerable balance. 
The solicitor was not present at the meeting, so no report was submitted.  
A vote was taken to approve and pay all outstanding bills presented and passed unanimously.
With no other business on the agenda, the meeting was adjourned at 7:45 p.m.The next meeting will take place on December 2,  at 7 p.m. at the Ridgway Township Municipal Building and is open to the public.
 
 

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