ILION — The Ilion village board adopted the tentative $6.9 million budget for 2018 that was presented at Monday’s public hearing and acted to move forward with a budgeted item to take a step toward improving the village water distribution system.

Chris Lawton, an engineer with Barton & Loguidice, said the agreement for the preliminary engineering report calls for a full scope of services, which would include a detailed evaluation to determine deficiencies in the system, an analysis of alternative solutions, evaluation of storage and distribution system improvements, recommendations for improvements and estimated project costs, a workshop to review and discuss alternatives and development of a draft preliminary engineering report.

The cost is $30,000.

The project site visit, field work, a workshop and a draft of the preliminary engineering report are scheduled to be finalized by late summer so the report can be submitted and the project given a score by the funding and review agencies and included on the list for possible funding.

"We’ll know by the end of November where we are on the list," said Lawton.

Funding announcements are expected early in 2019.

Lawton asked the village board to appoint a water committee that would include a village board member and one or two people from the water department. Village Trustee Kalman Socolof suggested at least one member of the village Municipal Utilities Board should also be included.

The village board voted to accept the proposal from Barton & Loguidice for the preliminary engineering report, noting the funds had been included in the budget for 2018-19.

The $6,957,987 spending plan is about 1 percent lower than the $7,016,051 budget for 2017-18. The tax levy is $4,600,912, down from $4,619,169, but village residents who live in the town of German Flatts will see a slight increase in their tax rate, which will go from $26.227 to $26.689 per $1,000 of assessed value. Those who live in the town of Frankfort will see a slight decrease, from $29.712 to $29.655 per $1,000.

Sewer project

Lawton updated the board on the $10.1 million project to rehabilitate the village’s sanitary sewer system. He said camera work will be getting under way soon. While a preliminary study looked at only 10 percent of the sewer lines, cameras will now be used to look at the entire system as part of the design phase of the project, scheduled for this year. Some smoke testing will also take place to check for cross connections. The design phase will be completed this year with bidding and construction to take place in 2019.

While some digging will be required for the construction phase of the project, much of the work will be done using trenchless technology to line leaking pipes, according to Lawton.

He explained that due to the number of leaks, when there is a heavy rain seven times the usual amount of water is sent to the treatment plant.

"That’s clean water you paid for at the county treatment plant," he said, adding that repairing the system will reduce the village’s sewer rates.