The DNR and EPA have given the Village time to reduce chlorides through voluntary measures. If not successful, the DNR/EPA may mandate expensive measures that will impact sewer rates in the future. If upgrading your water softener, contact the Village office about our Water Softener Rebate program.
Water Softening and the Environment
The Village of Francis Creek treats approximately 25,000 gallons of wastewater per day before it is discharged to ponds on County Highway V East of the Village. Wastewater treatment plants are designed to remove solids and organics commonly found in wastewater, although it cannot remove chlorides.
The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has set limits on the discharge of chlorides from the Village’s wastewater treatment plant. Chlorides are dissolved solids in the water that pass through a wastewater treatment plant. Treating for chlorides would require exotic treatment technologies that are extremely cost prohibitive; therefore, the only feasible way to reduce chlorides discharged from the treatment plant is to reduce the amount of chlorides sent down the sewer.
Residential softening is the most significant source of chlorides entering the wastewater treatment plant. The salt (sodium chloride) used by the softeners, passes through the treatment plant and ultimately ends up in neighboring lakes, streams, rivers, and groundwater. The cumulative effects of the salt used from each softener can have toxic effects on aquatic plants and animals.
Why Is Salt A Problem?
The primary salt utilized in home water softeners is sodium chloride (NaCl), a naturally occurring and commonly used substance. NaCl normally breaks down into sodium (Na+) and chloride (Cl-). These elements are discharged to the wastewater treatment plant via sanitary sewers.
Chlorides pass through the treatment plant and are discharged to surface water, where they may impact freshwater organisms and plants, from plankton to fish, by altering reproduction rates, increasing species mortality and changing the characteristics of the entire local ecosystem. In addition, as chloride filters down to the water table, it can stress plant respiration and change the desirability of our drinking water.
How Does A Water Softener Work?
In many Wisconsin communities, people use water softeners to remove minerals from their water that cause hardness. An ion-exchange process is the traditional method of removing hardness from water. Hard water passes through a column of sodium charged resin, where hard water ions such as calcium and magnesium are removed from the water by exchanging places with the resin-bound sodium ions. The water is then said to be “softened”.
The resin is “exhausted” when it has given up all or most of its available sodium ions. The resin is then “recharged” with sodium ions during a process known as regeneration. During this process, the resin is washed with a concentrated brine (salt) solution (most often NaCl) that reverses the hardness removal process. The regeneration wastewater, which is high in chlorides, ends up in the drain where it flows to the sanitary sewer.
What Can I Do to Reduce My Salt Usage?
Soften only the water that needs to be softened. If you are building a new house, remodeling bathrooms or kitchens, replacing old plumbing or installing a new water softener, consider where your water needs to be softened. Work with your plumber to connect your water softener to only those areas that need softened water.
Places to “Feed” Softened Water Are:
- hot water heater
- laundry facilities
- toilets (consider low flush models)
Places to Bypass Using the Water Softener:
- outside water spigots for yard use
- cold tap drinking water lines
By softening more water than what is really needed, you increase the cost of operating your softener (in terms of increased payments for salt and energy), and ultimately, more salt will enter the environment as a result of increased softener regenerations.
Softener Tune Up or Replacement TUNE UP… The Village of Francis Creek encourages residents to have their softeners inspected/tuned up on a regular basis (every 5-years) by a qualified technician who is knowledgeable in increasing softener salt use efficiency. Request that the softener be adjusted to minimize salt use while retaining enough softened water for normal household use. Things to consider include:
- Verifying softener set for proper hardness. If set for a higher than actual hardness level, the softener may be regenerating too often, wasting salt.
- Verifying/adjusting water demands
- Adjusting salt dose per regeneration
Water softener regeneration is most efficient at the beginning of the brine cycle. The higher the salt dosage in the cycle, the lower the regeneration efficiency.
By setting your water softener to regenerate more frequently and using less salt for each regeneration, you may be able to increase your softener’s regeneration efficiency.
Many older water softeners regenerate based on a timer typically set to regenerate once every 2 or 3 days, depending on expected water usage and water hardness. By measuring actual demand on the water softener, “demand initiated regeneration”, or DIR controls are much more efficient in the regeneration process. These systems can reduce salt use by up to 70%. These controls use either a flow meter or a hardness sensor to determine when to begin the cycle. The “payback” period for adding a DIR control to your water softener from reduced salt usage can be as little as 3 years.
The Village Water Softener Rebate Program provides residents the opportunity to receive cash back when replacing their water softener! Check it out today!
Newer DIR Models
Even if your current meter-based softener is older, newer DIR controls can predict and monitor softener performance, reducing salt usage. These higher efficient systems can save an additional 30% of salt use compared to the traditional metered system. Check with your local qualified water softening representative to see what is appropriate for your particular needs. Even if a newer, more efficient water softener is not in your immediate future, you can still optimize the efficiency of your home unit, resulting in savings for you and the environment.
Request for Bids for Engineering Services
Professional Engineering Services – Laurel Dr, Cherry Ave, Lilac Dr Road Reconstruction Project
Bids Due: Monday, September 12, 2022 at 7:00 P.M.
Bids to be opened at the Village Board Meeting
Project Description: The Village of Francis Creek is seeking professional engineering services for a full road reconstruction and curb and gutter project of the proposed roadways in the Village of Francis Creek:
- Laurel Drive
- Cherry Avenue
- Lilac Drive
Services would include architectural/Engineering design, preparing construction documents, construction bidding, monitor/supervise construction, and close-out phases. The project specifics can be found here.
Project Walk Through: A walk through of the site will be held on Tuesday, September 6, 2022 at 5:00 P.M. All interested contractors are encouraged to attend.
Contact Person: Questions for clarification and/or requests should be directed to:
Paul Rahmlow, Village President
200 Norwood Drive, PO Box 68
Francis Creek, WI 54214
Official Bid Informational Packet: FC Estates Trail Connection
Incumbents Who Have Filed a Notification of Noncandidacy (EL-163)for the 04/05/2022 – 2022 Spring Election(Due: 12/24/2021 at 5:00 p.m.)Interested in running for any of these offices? Check out our How to Run For Local Office page to get started today!
New ordinances will be presented to the Village Board to vote on at the November 1, 2021 meeting that starts at 7PM.
ATV/UTV Ordinance (DOES NOT INCLUDE GOLF CARTS)
If approved, they will be published in the Herald Times Reporter and on the Village Website and take effect on date of publication. Notice will also be posted in the three public posting locations in the Village; inside the post office, at the posting sign at the entrance to Pla-Mor Park located on Norwood, and on the door of the Village Office.
It’s that time of year again, time to license your dogs with the village!
Every dog, every year must be licensed to reside in the Village of Francis Creek. Yearly license cost is $5.00 for spayed or neutered and $10.00 for intact dogs. Dogs that are not licensed by April 1st, 2022 will be charged an additional late fee of $10.00 for each dog. Dogs not licensed by April 15, 2022 will be reported to the county.
Stop in the Village Office during regular hours to get your license.
OLD RATE NEW RATE
Single Unit $107 $120
Double Unit $214 $240
The rate increase was approved by the board to cover the increase in expenses to maintain and monitor the Village sewer system.
In addition, in early November the West Lift Station on North Packer Drive was replaced. The new lift station is replacing the existing station that was installed in the 1970’s. It will also be equipped with a backup generator and transfer switch in case of emergency power outage The Village Board has strived to keep taxes and fees low over the years but after nearly 50 years in service, this $140,000 improvement to the lift station was required.
Any questions? Call the clerk at 920-682-7410.
An ordinance establishing criteria for water softeners for any new construction and any replacement of current water softeners in the Village of Francis Creek, County of Manitowoc, State of Wisconsin; and
Whereas, the Village of Francis Creek, Wisconsin, owns and operates a wastewater treatment plant; and
Whereas, the Village by accepting wastewater assumes the risk for treatment but reserves the right to immediately discontinue acceptance of wastewater or seepage for operational and permit reasons; and
Now, therefore, be it ordained by the Village of Francis Creek Board; that the following criteria for water softeners for any new construction or replacement of current softeners be established;
Any water softener installed within the Village of Francis Creek after February 11, 2008, must be rated to have a salt efficiency of at least 4000 grains of hardness removed per pound of salt used.
All water softeners installed after February 11, 2008 must be approved and inspected by a representative of the Village of Francis Creek.
Any water softener installed after February 11, 2008, must regenerate on demand only. Water softeners which estimate water usage based on time are prohibited.
This ordinance following passage by the Village Board shall take effect on the day after its publication.
The provisions of this ordinance are severable. If any provision of this ordinance is invalid or if the application of any provision to any person or circumstance is invalid, such invalidity shall not affect the provisions or the applications of such or the remaining provisions which can be given effect without the invalid provisions or invalid application.
Date Adopted 2/11/08
NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN to each person who owns, occupies, or controls lands in the below municipalities of Manitowoc County, Wisconsin, to destroy all Noxious Weeds on such properties before the plants bloom. The Noxious Weeds are: Canada Thistle, Leafy Spurge, Field Bindweed (Creeping Jenny), and any other such weeds as the governing body of any municipality or the county board by ordinance or resolution declares to be noxious within its respective boundaries.
In addition to the above Noxious Weeds, all plants out of place and considered detrimental to the county must be controlled on all lands.
Weeds shall be controlled at such times and in such manner as will effectively prevent such plants from maturing to the bloom stage. This is set forth in the Wisconsin State Statute 66.0407.
VILLAGE OF FRANCIS CREEK, MANITOWOC COUNTY, WISCONSIN