City, state working on decanting station

Spokane Valley Mayor Tom Towey asked city staff at a study session Tuesday to move forward with an agreement with the Washington State Department of Transportation to build a decanting station to process waste collected from the city’s dry wells.

In the agreement, the city would design and build the facility on land near Pines Road and Montgomery Avenue owned by DOT. The state would own the building and property, plus it would maintain the facility. The city would be able to use the facility for its dry-well waste for much less than it does now.

Steve Worley, the city’s senior engineer for capital projects, told the council it costs $660 per load to haul and process waste such as rocks, mud, sand and other debris collected from its dry wells. The city cleans about 212 dry wells a year. With the new facility, the cost is cut to $120 to $250 a load.

“I’m pleased with this agreement,” said Councilman Dean Grafos.

Worley said construction could begin as early as this summer and the building could be operational by late summer or early fall.

The council also discussed the procedure to replace Councilwoman Brenda Grassel. Grassel is moving out of Spokane Valley and will officially step down Dec. 31.

The council has 90 days to find a replacement, but would like to speed up that process in order to have the replacement sworn in before the annual winter workshop.

“This council has been through this process before,” City Manager Mike Jackson said. The city will advertise the vacancy three times. Applications will be due by Jan. 11. From there, applicants will be interviewed by the council before an appointment is made Feb. 5.

Grassel’s seat will be on the ballot in November.

Council will not meet the next two Tuesdays over the holidays, and will have its next formal meeting Jan. 8 in council chambers at 6 p.m.

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