The sewer project could be back on track for next year.
WARREN -- Trumbull County commissioners have approved a $1 purchase agreement to buy a sewer treatment plant at the shuttered Kraft dairy products factory in Kinsman Township.
If a funding snag can be overcome, that plant on Burnett-East Road could provide the solution to sewage problems that cause a bad smell in the township center and concern for the Ohio EPA.
Acquiring the former Kraft Foods Wastewater Treatment Plant from Smearcase LLC, Andover, would dramatically reduce the cost of bringing sewers to Kinsman, which is far from county-owned sewer lines.
There are about 2,000 residents in Kinsman. The township center is one of about two dozen county places dubbed "unsewered areas of concern" by the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency.
The Kraft factory had turned milk into yogurt, cottage cheese and other products, employing about 60 people until ceasing operations last year.
Putting pipes in the ground to deliver the waste from homes to the treatment plant would cost about $5 million, county Sanitary Engineer Newbrough has said. Grants may reduce the cost to about $2 million, which would be charged to system users on utility bills, he said.
Alan Knapp, county planning commission director, said this week that the U.S. Department of Agriculture has notified the county that a $190,000 grant for the Kinsman sewer project won't be funded because of federal budget cuts.
Thursday, however, he said the office of U.S. Rep. Steven C. LaTourette, R-14th, told him the project could be back on track for next year. LaTourette's district includes seven northern townships in Trumbull County.
"It delays the project, but they're saying the funds would be available," Knapp said.
Commissioners in February authorized a pre-application for a $400,000 grant from the U.S. Economic Development Administration for phase one of the project. The $400,000 EDA grant was supposed to free up $190,000 from the USDA and $90,000 from the county's revolving loan fund.
The project would include a sanitary sewer along Burnett East Road to state Route 5.
Knapp cautioned that it remains to be seen if the $400,000 EDA grant will still be available a year later.