North Kent Sewer Authority

Latest technology on tour at treatment plant open house

June 4, 2009 // 0 Comments

It was nearly a decade in coming and is one of only a few of its kind in the United States. Residents of the City of Rockford and townships of Alpine, Cannon, Courtland and Plainfield have a vested interest in the North Kent Sewer Authority treatment plant at 4775 Coit NE, Grand Rapids. On Friday, June 5 at 5 p.m. come see the facility in action. The authority, comprised of the municipalities listed above, planned the $50 million plant almost ten years ago as a joint venture when they believed they were facing an unfair contract with their previous treatment provider.   The 40-year contract was set to expire November of 2008, and the City of Rockford and townships were expected to sign a new contract without even any idea of what the costs would be-except that they were going up. When they threatened to join forces and possibly build and run their own treatment plant, they were told it would happen when pigs fly.   That day came October 28, 2008 at 2:39 p.m. when the plant began processing the wastewater for the member communities. It has it saved over ten million dollars from what the five members’ taxpayers would have been charged with the previous treatment provider. In addition, the new plant has taken 4.3 million gallons a day from a system that was old, leaking, and regularly discharged untreated waste into the Grand River. Now the discharge the plant puts out is cleaner than the waters of the Grand River-all from a natural, Earth-friendly (and odorless) process. For the first time the public is invited into the normally fenced and locked facility to see the process at work first hand. It is a government success story that shows how leadership in local government can be creative, bold and stand up for taxpayers in seemingly unfair situations. Visitors to the public open house will be able to visit the four buildings of the plant and see the holding tanks-the equivalent of five Olympic-sized swimming pools. According to Authority Board Chairman Michael Young, the plant is running incredibly well and came in under budget at $47 million. The treatment plant uses membrane bio reactor technology that is state-of-the art facility that has had inquiries […]

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