Village seeks $750,000 more for water line upgrades

SARANAC LAKE – Village officials plan to tack $750,000 onto their existing state financing package for the village water project to pay for water line upgrades on Broadway, upper Main Street and Brandy Brook Avenue.

Village Manager John Sweeney said the village plans to replace a section of water main under Broadway that stretches from the bridge over the Saranac River to the intersection with Bloomingdale Avenue, along with several lateral lines. A 20-foot section of that main ruptured last month, flooding the basement of the JC Penney building and shutting down that section of Broadway for five days until village crews were able to find and replace it.

On upper Main Street, the village plans to install a larger-diameter water transmission main from roughly Pine Street to the NAPA Auto Parts store.

On Brandy Brook Avenue, Sweeney said the village will move lateral lines that serve homes in the area from an older water line to a newer line.

Village Treasurer Paul Ellis said the village is working with the state Environmental Facilities Corporation to add onto the existing $12.5 million financing package it provided the village to upgrade its water system. That money has been used over the last two years to drill a pair of wells, build a new water storage tank and install new water lines throughout the village.

“It would require us to pass a bond resolution to borrow up to a maximum of $13,250,000,” Ellis said. “In essence, the village would be borrowing an additional $750,000, which would be spread out over a 30-year period of time. The impact on the debt service payment would be about $25,000.

“Given the alternative of having to do a series of short-term borrowing, this is the most cost-effective way to get the work done, with the least impact to the ratepayers.”

Ellis said EFC officials are “willing to move forward” with this proposed financing plan, although Sweeney said he doesn’t have it in writing yet. The only problem, Ellis said, is that the work couldn’t be done until this fall because of the EFC approval process.