Jun 24, 2013 7:13 PM by Chris Welty
We often hear growing is a good thing, but dealing with growing pains can be a problem.
The City of Carencro is tackling growing pains when it comes to water, sewage and natural gas and it's residents who will end up paying for it.
Over the last two years, Carencro's population has grown by almost seven percent. In an audit of the city's finances, the utility fund lost more than 160-thousand dollars last year because of under-charging for utilities.
The city continues to shell out money they didn't budget to keep up with its growing population.
"A choice of doing nothing is not a choice, we need to move forward," said Carencro Mayor Glenn Brasseaux.
He believes the City of Carencro must get moving and construct a new sewage plant soon. Until that's done, they're repairing the current pipes.
"We treat a million gallons of sewage per day on a dry day, but when we have a rain event, we could do two million or more treating rain water," said Brasseaux.
He says a sewer pipe installed in the 1970's is collapsing in a large part of Carencro. Since December, nearly 300-thousand dollars has been spent to fix leaks and collapsed lines.
"We have some new businesses that have moved into town and a lot of residential that's taxing our sewer system."
Because of Carencro's growth, Mayor Brasseaux says this sewage plant will be at capacity within the next two years. He says the city's best option is to build a new plant.
"We'll have to levee off one third of that pond, dig up all the sludge and get to solid ground. We may even have to put some pilings in there to get a good foundation."
In all, the project could cost nearly 15-million dollars, but there is no time-line on when the Carencro City-Council could approve building a new sewage plant. If the plan is approved, the city will use bonds and funding from the Department of Environmental Quality.
As far as what residents will have to pay, at this point, there's no word on how much rates could go up.