Joint boards approve bond authorization

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NAUGATUCK — The Joint Boards of Mayor and Burgesses and Board of Finance approved a resolution May 14 to bond $2.16 million to begin upgrades to the wastewater treatment plant.

New environmental guidelines state that municipalities with wastewater treatment facilities must make millions of dollars in upgrades to mitigate pollutants, which includes limiting the levels of nitrogen and oxygen plants release.

At a referendum last November voters rejected bonding $12.43 million bond for upgrades to the plant, which is operated by Veolia Water North America.

The state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, on behalf of the federal Environmental Protection Agency, issued Naugatuck an administrative order in March that forces the borough to move forward with EPA-mandated plant upgrades.

If the work isn’t done, the borough could face penalties, including shutting down parts of the plant. Since the administrative order has been issued, the borough is able to authorize bonding legislatively.

The $2.16 million bond will be put toward plans, studies, reports, evaluations and testings to determine exactly what engineering, architectural work and financing the borough needs to comply with new federal environmental guidelines. The bond also includes repairs to the siphon for Fulling Mill Brook at North Main Street.

The borough is expected to bond more money in the future to continue the mandated upgrades.