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    See Map of "Sewer Pipeline" with proposed pump stations, part of conceptual main pipeline, etc.

Conceptual MSD Map of "Salt River Potential Sewershed Map"

FLOYDS FORK ENVIRONMENTAL ASSOCIATION

Founded 1991

www.floydsfork.net, facebook

4-10-14

Floyds Fork Environmental Association is a 501 c 3 nonprofit founded in 1991 with the mission to protect, conserve and preserve Floyds Fork Creek and its watershed. The”23rd Annual Floyds Fork Creek Sweep” by canoe, kayak or on foot will be held Saturday, June 7th, 2014.

Another layer of bureaucracy, i.e., the creation of a Sewer Pipeline by forming a Regional Sewer Wastewater Commission— encompassing counties Henry, Spencer, Oldham, Jefferson, Bullitt, Nelson, Meade, Hardin to Ft. Knox, but Spencer and Nelson have already said, “No”.Shelby County has not made a decision. MSD Director Greg Heitzman gave a conceptual map May 28, 2013. This conceptual map (Salt River Potential Sewershed Mp) can be seen on www.floydsfork.net or facebook. However, this proposed sewer pipeline is not shown in Oldham and one half ofJefferson but is sure to affect these heavily populated areas! Each county that joins will have a seat on its board. The “fees” levied by this commission will be in addition to MSD charges and rate increases.

 State legislators denied House Bill 221 for a several years, and then it became known as House Bill 26 where the commission, when formed, can levy annual fees up to 5 % plus costs for capital improvements (sewer lines, sewer plants, etc.). Costs have been 5% cap plus 10% capital costs equaling 15% increases per year for ratepayers inNorthern Kentucky where a Regional Sewer Commission formed 3 years ago. Yes, that adds up to 45% increase! 

 Ratepayers will pay costs for a secretary, treasurer, annual audit, general manager, for each commissioner to attend each meeting, seminars (local or out-of-town) plus expenses. MSD Director Greg Heitzman is meeting with powerful politicians in surrounding counties in hopes of forming a “working group” that are potential contract signees. 

 Our 22 year old organization, Floyds Fork Environmental Association (FFEA), followed the legislation for 4 years and managed some changes.  August 20, 2013, FFEA representatives met with Director Heitzman to point out our concerns:

 1. This sewer authority would not be under the PSC that would afford the public an opportunity to speak regarding rate increases.

2. 'Home rule' is lost since our Mayor is but one at a table of commissioners and thus only has one vote on this board.

3. No provision to be under state ethics rules.

4. Small cities are far less likely to obtain grant monies since deference is to the regional commission, possibly forcing small cities to join.

5. Potential for expensive legal entanglements.

6. Nongovernmental organizations like FFEA or even elected officials cannot speak before the commission or hearing officer (Mr. Heitzman offered to put it in the bylaws that we could - but bylaws can be changed).

7. Eminent Domain issues.

8. Potential for monopoly formation.

9. Need for more transparency (provision for posting monetary figures on a website is only a beginning and not enough transparency).

 While Mayor Fischer may save a small percent and “keep a lid on water bills” with the Louisville Water Company, sewer bills will exponentially escalate like rates did in Northern Kentucky and it will be impossible to keep a lid on them.

 An MSD conceptual map of part of the SEWER PIPELINE route exists (see it at www.floydsfork.net ; however, it leaves out critical portions of its route through heavily populated sections ofJefferson County andOldham. Citizens need to know that local control and efficient management will have a hard time keeping up with this Pipeline train once it leaves the station.

Recently, March 17, 2014, a meeting was held by MSD at KIPDA.  MSD Director Greg Heitzman was the presenter; he showed multiple power point slides. Elected officials from various counties (8 elected officials that included Judge/Executive Melanie Roberts fromBullitt County and Judge/Executive John Black fromOldham County plus 11 wastewater personnel) and a few citizens and FFEA were in the public’s “peanut gallery”.  He wanted these folks to sign up for a “work group” meeting. At the end, I asked how the public would be treated in future meetings like when this work group would meet and if the public could speak at those meetings. Mr. Heitzman said the first work group meeting would not allow any public to sit in the meeting.  He said the next work group meeting would allow the public.  After that, he said he would not allow the public to the next meeting, and then allow the next and so on – like he did when he formed the Louisville Water Company work group. He never commented on the public being allowed to speak or not. I was not allowed to sign up to attend the work group meeting. KIPDA said I could not sign the signup sheet.

All of this is the public’s business and affects the public and every ratepayer not only inJefferson County but many counties. 

The March 2014 MSD Power Point was entitled “Regional Sewer-Wastewater Commission, Salt River Basin, Greg C. Heitzman, Presentation to Salt River Regional Wastewater Providers, KIPDA Office, Louisville, KY March 28, 2014 (although this was given on March 17). The entire power point is available at www.floydsfork.net but the sewer pipeline map was not shown at this time! Mr. Heitzman is targeting the following 5 counties (for now): Oldham,Jefferson, Bullitt, Hardin and Meade.

Do you really think each elected Mayor or Judge/Executive of each county will actually sit in the seat at the commission’s board meetings? Or do you think wastewater personnel will sit in these seats to vote on rates and other matters? Or will their deputies fill their seats? 

Fee increases lacks transparency for rate increases because there can and will be additional costs for ratepayers for Capital Infrastructure. This was proven in Northern KY Sanitation District #1 where there was a Regional Sewer Commission formed; then ratepayers paid the 5% cap but then 10% capital infrastructure costs were added to equal 15%. MSD must give pertinent information like this to have transparency! There is a difference in a partial truth and the whole truth – FFEA gives the whole truth.

In one slide that lists his initial meeting (arranged by Senator Dan Seum) at the Homebuilders of Louisville May 13, 2013, there were no environmental organizations represented (Courier reporter’s blog). Only because FFEA requested a meeting are we listed for August 20, 2013.  Also,Spencer County is listed as “not eligible” but Spencer opted out long ago!

Since he has already met with city and county elected officials and key constituents, he planned to hold his first work group April, 2014 but FFEA will not get a notice and I was not allowed to sign the sign up sheet per Mr. Heitzman and refused by KIPDA. Consideration of forming this Sewer Commission will be after a study is completed in 2015.

KIPDA is playing a big role now and will be the Facilitator and will issue the Request for Proposal to develop and request the study that will cost about $100,000 with MSD paying up to $50,000 of this. Other counties will be asked to give $2,500 to $10,000 each. They will also look for small grants, KIPDA, Lincoln Trail ADD, and KY Division of Water for $15,000 each. KIPDA will evaluate proposals and select the consultant.

Finally in November, after all the work is done, the public and see the findings! I see only that a public MEETING – not HEARING will occur. Then in December when all people are interested in family and Christmas, the report will be finalized and released.

 Look for more upsizing of sewer pump stations (some proposed are on the map) and many sewer basins to be dug!

You are encouraged to look at FFEA concerns and see if there is a way you can chime in before Turkey Time and Christmas Time! Example: FFEA worked to get better public speaking at MSD board meetings so you can speak for 5 minutes before the MSD Board if you sign up BEFORE 12:50 but call MSD beforehand 540-6000. Also, let me know if you really believe you will get notices about meetings until the end when decisions/agreements were made in the work group meetings. www.floydsfork.net or FloydsForkCreek@aol.com

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Earth Day Awards Ceremony April 11, 2014

at Berry Hill Mansion, Frankfort, KY.

Photo: Left: President Obama's Regional Administrator for US EPA Southeast Region, Heather McTeer Toney; next, FFEA co-founders, Teena Halbig & Sheron Lear.  Far Right: Dr. Len Peters, Governor Beshear's Cabinet Secretary of Energy & Environment. Foreground, Peter Bodnar III, VP FFEA

Flovds Fork Environmental Association

Louisvillians used to swim and fish in Floyd's Fork but activities like these are no longer recommended in this waterway due to contamination. The stream, which passes through severalKentucky counties, has been declared unsafe for these uses by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Before the federal government took an interest in its quality, medical technologist Teena Halbig and histotechnologist Sheron Lear founded the Floyd's Fork Environmental Association to clean up a waterway that had become a dumping ground.

Over a period of 22 years, the group has:

·         Removed 120 tons of tires, appliances, shingles, 55-gallon drums and other trash from the creek. Sponsored an annual canoeing event known as the Floyds Fork Creek Sweep, to focus on the clean-up.

·         Alerted regulators to problems at Jeffersontown Wastewater Treatment regarding overflows and illegal bypasses. Now the plant is scheduled to be demolished and its flow rerouted.

·         Successfully lobbied for the retirement of other small sewer package plants along Floyd's Fork

·         Fought for improved speaking rules before the Metropolitan Sewer District board to facilitate increased participation from the general public

·         Scrutinized an unlined lagoon in a karst environment

·         Served on a technical advisory committee with U.S. EPA and Kentucky Division of Water, regarding nutrients and pathogens in Floyd's Fork

Because pathogens are microscopic, Floyd's Fork Environmental Association initiated conversation on hormones in the creek. FFEA's outreach activities go beyond the annual Floyd's Fork Sweep clean-up event to include field trips for schoolchildren, bike and hike events and bird-watching walks.

The work of Halbig, Lear, and countless volunteers, have resulted in changed policies and increased awareness of rampant development.

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23rd ANNUAL FLOYDS FORK CREEK SWEEP 

                                              June 7, 2014 (Saturday)

8:00A.M. Sign In (see times below)

Pope Lick Park*/former Floyds Fork Park*

 

**Breakfast, lunch and refreshments provided & Picnic Lunch **

- Some canoes provided free to use with life jackets and paddles by calling 267-6883 or emailing Teena Halbig teenahal@aol.com  - make a reservation now since on a first come, first served basis. Be sure to say how many persons will be volunteering. Also notify us if necessary to cancel.

- Additional volunteers who have canoes & kayaks  are encouraged to bring them; please let us know you are coming and how many persons – usually 2-3 persons per canoe. Walkers on foot are assigned cleanup areas .Birding expert available for those interested. 

Sponsors

Floyds Fork Environmental Association

Councilman Stuart Benson

Councilman Robin Engel

Louisville/Jefferson County Metro Government

Co-Sponsors

Canoe Kentucky

Division of Solid Waste Management

Jefferson Animal Hospital Fern Creek

Jefferson County Soil & Water Conservation District

Long Run Sportsmen Club

The Parklands of Floyds Fork 

8:00 A.M.             Registration and free light breakfast

8:15 A.M.             Officials and Event & Education Announcements

8:30 A.M.             Transport to canoe launch sites provided

Noon-1 or 2 P.M. You arrive at take out point.  Volunteers are transported back to the John Floyd Fields Building for free lunch. 

*Directions  to Pope Lick Park/former Floyds Fork Park: Go behind Shell/Circle K Gas Station located at 14305 Taylorsville Road).  If headed toward Fisherville on Taylorsville Road, turn RIGHT onto South Pope Lick Road off Taylorsville Road. Follow the signs, go over the bridge to the parking lot on the right and come to the building. 

-Event sponsors are not responsible for any injury or damage incurred during the event-

www.floydsfork.net, facebook

RSVP teenahal@aol.com, 267-6883, Teena Halbig, President FFEA

 

 

 

Floyds Fork Enviro. Assn.
(Teena Halbig)
6505 Echo Trail
Louisville, KY. 40299

  (502) 267-6883
   teenahal@aol.com
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