fourth st

ONTARIO -- Ontario City Council has approved the purchase of nearly 70 acres as a possible location of its proposed wastewater treatment plant. 

At its Wednesday evening meeting, council unanimously approved legislation allowing Mayor Randy Hutchinson to purchase three parcels, located at 1779 West Fourth Street, from Mansfield Holdings LLC for $700,000.

"At the time, this is where we're considering putting the wastewater treatment plant. It's the proposed site," said law director Andrew Medwid. 

Upon taking ownership, the city will complete a series of tests to determine whether or not the property is a feasible option for the proposed wastewater treatment plant. If the site isn't feasible, the agreement will be voided, Medwid explained. The property's ownership would return to Mansfield Holdings LLC, and Ontario would receive its $700,000 back. 

As of now, the property seems promising. Mayor Hutchinson likes how the space is large enough for future expansions, whereas other proposed properties did not feature the same potential. 

Further, the purchase price of $700,000 only covers a portion of the property's value. The remaining portion of the property is expected to be donated by Mansfield Holdings LLC, according to Medwid.

Earlier this year, a cost analysis by the Poggemeyer Design Group of Bowling Green found Ontario could save between $305,602 and $841,241 per year by 2026 if it were to build its own wastewater treatment plant instead of continuing a 30-year contract with the City of Mansfield.

It appears Ontario would pay $2.4 million to $2.6 million per year with its own wastewater treatment plant, while it would pay $2.9 million to $3.3 million per year for Mansfield to continue providing this service.

It's unclear what type of wastewater treatment plant is being considered for the site. In previous meetings, there's been two types of treatment processes discussed -- a sequence batch reactor (SBR) or an oxidation ditch. 

Throughout 2019, Ontario residents will see their sewer rates rise incrementally. Ontario City Council passed legislation Wednesday, Dec. 19 that will increase sewer rates for city residents, businesses and its other customers by ten percent (in total) over the next year. 

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