Sanitation board pays more than $160K in extra chloride-reduction costs

Santa Clarita Valley Sanitation District officials provided this graphic to illustrate how the new treatment plant will remove chlorides from wastewater.

Members of the local sanitation board approved $160,000 worth of extra work pursuing their four-year chloride compliance plan.

On Monday, members of the Santa Clarita Valley Sanitation District board voted in favor of a recommendation to pay for the extra work.

Construction of an ultraviolet disinfection facility at the Valencia Water Reclamation Plant is part of a plan to reduce the amount of salty chloride discharged daily into the Santa Clara River.

Board members were given a short list of technical reasons explaining the extra costs. 

During construction, they were told, the contractor was directed to construct two concrete pipe encasements and one concrete slurry pipe support, and install six guard posts. 

Changes were also made to the piping material for the UV and sodium hypochlorite systems, and several electrical duct banks required changes to their proposed elevations. 

The recommendation considered by the board explained the changes as “necessary to protect existing facilities and ensure the proper operation of the new facility. “

Board members noted that their decision to approve the extra work was in keeping with the Sanitation Districts’ Guiding Principles of commitment to operational excellence — protection of public health and the environment, regulatory compliance and cost effectiveness.

They also noted a need to maximize use of their assets and resources such as recycled water, recyclables and energy.

After two decades of wrangling over ways to reduce the amount of salty chloride ending up in the Santa Clara River, sanitation officials agreed in January to pay an Irvine company $87.3 million to build a chloride-reducing plant.

And, when officials talk of advanced water treatment what they mean is extracting salty chloride from the water through reverse osmosis. The new facility is to be added to the existing water treatment plant on The Old Road at Rye Canyon Road.

Sanitation board members believe it will enable them to meet water content standards set by state and federal officials as to the amount of chloride discharged into the Santa Clara River at the SCV’s two wastewater treatment plants.

The new plant is expected to appease downstream farmers of salt-sensitive crops, such as strawberries and avocados, which are grown in Ventura County.

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