City Government > Department Pages > Waste Water Department
Daren Johnson, Superintendent - (989)463-6506
The district serves all of the City of Alma, and parts of Arcada and Pine River Townships.
Alma's Wastewater Treatment Plant is an Activated Sludge Plant with Extended Aeration. Incoming wastewater is mixed with a mature population of bacteria (activated sludge) and is aerated for about 24 hours (plants without extended aeration have shorter detention times). Ferric chloride is added to enhance solids separation and phosphorus removal in two final clarifiers. Solids removed at the clarifiers are returned to the aeration basins. Clear water leaving the clarifiers is disinfected with chlorine before it passes through a polishing pond with a detention time of about 36 hours. Water is further clarified in the polishing pond and chlorine levels are reduced to below detection limits before water leaves the plant.
All of the water is discharged into the Pine River. Treated wastewater comprises slightly over one percent of the total river flow.
The clarity of the water is greater than that of the river, and the City meets all federal and state discharge limits.
The plant is designed for 2.5 million gallons per day, but it is usually below the maximum level. The plant can handle up to 7.5 MGD for short periods of time. The average day the plant treats 2.0MGD.
All equipment pertaining to the treatment and pumping, including eleven lift stations, is maintained by the staff of the Wastewater Division. Once a year everything is emptied out and inspected for corrosion. Anything mechanical is above water so it can be inspected at any time.
The sewer collection system is maintained by the Streets/Utilities Department.
About 1.0 million gallons of liquid sludge is applied to farm land each year.
Dear City of Alma residents,
This letter is for all city residents that are connected to the City's sewer system or will be in the future. This letter is intended to educate you, the homeowner, and anyone living in your home as to what should not be flushed down the toilets. We have been experiencing an increasing number of clogged pipes in the sewer system recently because of foreign material being flushed down the toilets or poured down drains. The pumps in the wastewater plant are designed to handle water, human waste and tissue paper only.
Examples of what should not be flushed down toilets or poured down drains are as follows:
· Cloth rags or towels
· Baby wipes, Toilet wipes, Towelettes, Disinfecting wipes, or cloth wipes of any kind (even if the container indicates that they are “flushable”)
· Paper (other than toilet paper/tissue)
· Medications (Prescription, or over the counter. Medication and Sharps disposal container available at the Public Safety Building)
· Feminine hygiene products of any kind
· Beauty products, Q-Tips, dental floss
· Plastics of any kind
· Grease of any kind – especially cooking grease
· Garden supplies (such as pesticides, fertilizers)
· Paint, varnish, paint remover
· Motor oil, gasoline, or any explosive material
In fact, any of the above listed items above should not be flushed into a septic tank either. Instead, any items listed above items should be disposed of in a of properly manner.
Remember... only water, human waste and tissue paper should be flushed down toilets. Clogged pumps lead to sewer backups in your homes and very are expensive for you to clean and or repair.
Thanks for your considerations!
The Wastewater Division is responsible for the proper treatment and disposal of sanitary sewer waste. This process includes the operation and maintenance of the treatment plant itself along with the operation and maintenance of fourteen sanitary sewer pump stations located throughout the City.
The sanitary sewer system of the City of Alma is actually composed of three distinct physical resources that together form the waste water system and the related treatment facility. This system is composed of the sanitary sewer mains located in streets, alleys, and other public right of ways; fourteen lift stations to pump and lift sewage in areas where gravity will not provide positive transport of the waste materials, and the most visible portion of the system which is the treatment plant itself. The sanitary sewer system is maintained by two different divisions of the Public Services Department. Sewer mains are cleaned and repaired by the Public Works Division. The balance of the system, namely the lift stations and the treatment plant, are operated and maintained by the Wastewater Treatment Division. Together these two divisions of the Public Service Department keep the sanitary sewer system operating and working properly.
(Price per 1,000 gallons)$3.90
Minimum charges for multiple users. When any premises containing three or more dwelling units defined as a self contained unit with kitchen and bath facilities served by a single meter, the monthly minimum charge shall be equal to the minimum charge for the single dwelling unit as determined by the meter size serving such unit, plus $16.19 for each additional unit.
Wastewater bills rendered shall be immediately due and payable and may be paid without late charge up to and including the fifteenth day after the billing date when rendered and shall thereafter be subject to a ten percent (10%) late charge.
City Charter and Code of Ordinances
525 East Superior Street
Alma, Michigan 48801
Phone (989) 463-8336
Fax (989) 463-5574