Possible hospital closing puts treatment plant project in question

HANOVER – The Hanover Town Board recently discussed one more way the possible closing of Lake Shore Hospital is affecting the town.

In June, Hanover presented wastewater treatment plant renovations totaling $5.3 million. At the time, residents were skeptical of the cost and necessity of the project and urged the town to seek a second engineering opinion. The matter was tabled for discussion until the shocking news of the possible closure of Lake Shore Hospital in October.

This not only will have an impact on medical care and jobs in the community but also whether some of the plant upgrades are necessary.

“We are stuck in a holding pattern,” Councilman Bernard Feldmann Jr. said. “At the same time Lake Shore is deciding to close, we have to make the decision to do a full expansion.”

He explained if the hospital remains open the plant will need to be expanded, but if it does not the scope of the project would be different. However, interest rates cited in the project’s original cost will not last for much longer, so the board must soon make a decision.

Until then Councilman Kevin O’Connell and Wastewater Treatment Operator Mark Ellis will work on prioritizing aspects of the project.

O’Connell also reported on his research into making the railroad crossings in Sunset and Hanford bays quiet zones. He was able to make contact with officials in the town of Hamburg, which recently went through the process. He also discovered the cost for Hanover to go through with the project would be much more than Hamburg due to the size of the roads at a cost of $600,000 to $1 million per crossing.

The board tabled the project pending securing state or federal funding.

The board also authorized the water and wastewater departments to attend the WNY Waterworks Conference on Feb. 12 in Batavia at town expense.

Cody Wicks was added as an active member of the Hanover Center Fire Department.

The town will meet next on Jan. 27.