Washington Evening Journal
111 North Marion Avenue
Washington, IA 52353
Highland school district officials are hoping that the construction of a new wastewater treatment system at the middle school and high school will be the district’s major project this summer.
Superintendent Ken Crawford said that bids on the project are due by 1 p.m., Friday.
The school board will review the bids at its May 10 meeting and will vote whether to proceed at its May 24 meeting.
“Everything depends on how the bids come back,” Crawford said. “We’re hoping we get good bids.”
One of the concerns has been the skyrocketing prices of supplies due to shortages during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“If the bids are too high, we may have to wait because of the high cost of some supplies,” Crawford said.
While that would delay the project, Crawford said that the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has given the district a July 2022 deadline to complete the project.
“We also have the option to file for an extension with the DNR if we need to,” he said.
If the school board accepts one of the bids, work would be done over the summer with an eye on having the new system fully operational by November.
In early 2019, the district was notified by the DNR that the school exceeded the DNR-mandated levels set for ammonia in the wastewater for six months of 2018. The school also exceeds the limits for E. coli in the wastewater.
There are two other project planned at the middle school/high school campus this summer.
New lines and hookups for the building’s LP tanks will be installed, and the kitchen will get a new indoor freezer and cooler.
“Not really a lot going on,” Crawford said. “The big one is the wastewater project.”