Truesdale still unsure on future plans for sewer service

Posted 12/27/21

The city of Truesdale is still straddling two different paths for the future of its residential sewer service. Truesdale leaders are pursuing a better relationship with their larger neighbor and …

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Truesdale still unsure on future plans for sewer service

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The city of Truesdale is still straddling two different paths for the future of its residential sewer service. Truesdale leaders are pursuing a better relationship with their larger neighbor and current sewer service provider, the city of Warrenton, while at the same time investigating an option for a new outside provider.

Limited availability for additional sewer service has been a barrier to housing and business development in Truesdale since early last year, when Warrenton aldermen directed the city not to make any additional sewer capacity available until the Warrenton wastewater plant is expanded several years from now. Leaders at the time said this was to ensure dwindling sewer capacity is reserved for developments in Warrenton.

New Warrenton leaders who took office in 2021 have expressed willingness to change that position, but their counterparts in Truesdale said they still plan to explore alternate options.

Ultimately, Truesdale’s goal is to be connected to a sewer service provider that will allow significant new construction in the small town said Mayor Chris Watson. One of the top options right now is a potential petition to Public Water Supply District 2 of St. Charles County (PWSD 2) to extend its sewer network to Truesdale. The regional public utility provider already serves a portion of eastern Warren County, including Wright City.

During a Truesdale Board of Aldermen meeting in December, engineers with Klingner & Associates said PWSD 2 is already considering an expansion of services in Warren County due to other regional development. Engineer Josh Hartsock said his firm is reaching out to ask about including Truesdale in that expansion.

“Also, there’s a potential for a connection point a lot closer than what we (originally) anticipated,” significantly lowering the cost of connecting to that network, Hartsock said.

Alternately, Truesdale city leaders could be willing to continue their relationship with Warrenton, but only with major revisions to the agreement between the two towns.

Mark Bross, another engineer with Klingner & Associates, said several provisions in Truesdale’s sewer service contract with Warrenton put the smaller town at a disadvantage.

“This gives Warrenton control to choose its own developments over the city of Truesdale’s potential developments,” Bross said of one contract provision. He commented that the agreement could be revised to allow developers to at least begin work on new subdivisions in Truesdale, even if some of the homes can’t be built until after Warrenton’s sewer capacity is expanded.

Warrenton city leaders have said they’re open to revisiting the service arrangements with Truesdale. During a joint meeting between the two cities earlier this fall, Warrenton Mayor Eric Schleuter said he will support new contract negotiations.

Aldermen Larry Corder and Steve Cullom, both of whom were elected this year, said they want city staff to determine how much unclaimed capacity exists in the Warrenton sewer system that could potentially be made available for developments in Truesdale.

The two cities have not yet made formal arrangements to actually carry out new contract negotiations.

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