The town of Frenchville’s Wastewater Treatment Facility serves approximately 175 residential and commercial customers, and is licensed by the United States Environmental Protection Agency and the Maine Department of Environmental Protection. The Facilty contains aerated lagoons with a 1.6 million gallon capacity, in which aerobic bacteria effectively treat waste before it is discharged to the St. John River in Frenchville. The waste collection system leading to the lagoons includes a sewer system with 3 pump stations in the town of Frenchville.
The Facility’s license includes specific limits on the amount of Biochemical Oxygen Demand (BOD), Total Suspended Solids (TSS), residual Chlorine, and Fecal Coliform bacteria that can be discharged. In addition, the Facility is also required to conduct semi-annual sampling for Mercury, which is analyzed at an accredited outside laboratory.
The Facility is staffed by a Certified Wastewater Treatment Operator, with maintenance and collection system support by public works employees, who are also on call for unscheduled and emergency situations.
The Operator is responsible for plant operation, required monitoring and laboratory analysis, and required monthly and special reporting to government. The State requires that the Operator holds a Grade 2 Biological License as a minimum for plant operation, but our current Operator has a Grade 5 Biological Treatment license (the highest license classification).
We consistently monitor operations for excellence, perform preventative maintenance on our equipment and buildings, and regularly employ local contractors to assist in scheduled maintenance of our collection system and lagoon. The plant grounds, which are located within the downtown area of Frenchville, are also well maintained to provide a pleasing view for both residents and visitors to the town of Frenchville.
The Wastewater Regionalization Project of 2012-2013 was a project in which Frenchville’s Facility began to accept and treat wastewater from the Town of St. Agatha. St. Agatha’s treatment plant is located by Long Lake in St. Agatha, and the treated effluent was once pumped to the St. John River in Frenchville. Improvements to St. Agatha’s wastewater treatment system were required as inflow and infiltration issues and limited treatment plant capacity have occasionally overwhelmed their system, causing untreated waste to be discharged into Long Lake. It was decided to close the existing treatment plant in St. Agatha and eliminate the possibility of future discharges to Long Lake, a local resource that is highly valued by both St. Agatha and Frenchville residents.
The project will make modifications to our collection system. The Facility’s treatment system has been designed to handle the resulting doubling of total users and associated flow, while maintaining extra treatment capacity to accommodate additional Frenchville users in the future.