Full-scale upgrades to existing infrastructure will be made. A new membrane building will also be built at the plant.
The Sanitary Engineering Department decided to use a membrane filtration method of softening instead of a process that relies on lime. Membrane filtration uses a tightly wound wrap that has very small pores that filter out contaminants like metal and other impurities.
Huber Heights and Miamisburg recently installed membrane filtration systems in their water plants.
Tincu hopes that once the project is completed, Greene County homes will be able to phase out in-home softeners or at least turn them down significantly, saving homeowners time and money.
Greene County is targeting the same hardness as Dayton and Montgomery County, Tincu said.
To pay for the project, the Sanitary Engineering Department has taken out a 20-year loan from the Ohio EPA’s Division of Environmental Financial Assistance. The loan is for about 1.5%, which Tincu said is a “very competitive interest rate.”
The county also has bonds that are coming due and plans to use that debt coverage to help fund the water treatment plant improvements, Tincu said. That means Greene County residents won’t see their water rates rise because of the project because the county can accommodate this project under the current rate structure.
Although the project is still in the early stages of design, Tincu said things are progressing as expected.
“We’re trying to focus on reliability, affordability and water quality for our customers,” Tincu said. “I’ve been in this business for 22 years and I always hear gripes about the water quality in Greene County. I’m a resident and a customer so I’m excited for this project, too.”