Currently, the Talkeetna Sewer and Water System is operating at a six-figure annual deficit, according to a draft report by CRW Engineering Group. CRW was contracted by the Mat-Su Borough to assess the system with $100,000 allocated by the state legislature last year. The idea is to get a picture of the current state of the system, which was installed in the 1980s, as well as to look at the financial status. In all, there are hundreds of pages of raw data in addition to the report itself.
CRW Engineering did two separate assessments, one for sewer and one for water. On the operational side, they found that the water treatment and distribution system does have some issues, but that the system is working well, and has some room for growth in usage. One of the larger issues that was pointed out is the inability of the current backup generator to supply both well pumps. Normally, that isn’t an issue, but if there was a sudden, dramatic spike in usage during a power outage, say, in the event of a fire hydrant opening, the pumps might not be able to keep up. The borough was already aware of the issue, and has begun looking for funding for a more powerful generator. (more…)