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Escalon may ship treated wastewater to Manteca
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Tanker truck traffic on East Highway 120 between Escalon and Manteca is expected to pick up in the coming weeks.

It will happen if the Manteca City Council agrees to a mutual aid agreement with the City of Escalon to accept up to 100,000 gallons of treated industrial wastewater a day.

Staff turnover at Escalon’s treatment plant led to problems at that city’s dedicated industrial wastewater system that serves food processors. Specifically, the problem is with wastewater coming from the processing of tomatoes. Escalon is having issues with its percolation basins for such treated water. As a result, the Regional Water Quality Control Board is requiring Escalon to find another way to handle the treated wastewater generated during the tomato processing season.

The wastewater would be trucked to the Manteca wastewater treatment facility on West Yosemite Avenue. There the treated water will be blended into the ponds at the Manteca facility that handles food processing wastewater from Eckert’s Cold Storage on Moffat Boulevard that specializes in bell pepper processing. The mixture will then be used to irrigate municipal property at the wastewater treatment plant that is leased to an area farmer to grow corn to produce silage for dairy cows.

Escalon will pay Manteca $50 a truckload to cover the city’s cost incurred for staff time and testing expenses.

The City Council will consider the agreement when they meet Tuesday at 7 p.m. at the Civic Center, 1001 W. Center St.