Since the January death of New Milford's wastewater treatment facility supervisor Ken Bailey, the plant's assistant chief operator, Ronnie Ploof, has conducted the supervisor's duties.

"We were informed of Ken Bailey's passing," said Dennis Schain, state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection spokesman, "and were saddened. We had worked with Mr. Bailey for some time.

"There are certain regulations that must be followed in filling Mr. Bailey's position," Schain explained. "Roland Denny, who deals with municipal facilities, has been in discussion with the (New Milford) Sewer Commission and the assistant chief operator at the plant.

"They're following all of the proper steps," he commented.

The plant has the capacity to process 2 million gallons of effluent daily. An expansion project was completed in 2010.

The DEEP has given the Sewer Commission one year to fill the No. 4 Chief Operator's position held by Bailey, according to March meeting minutes.

Calls by The Spectrum to Sewer Commission chairman Frank Bidetti and vice chairman John Heaton have not been returned.

Mayor Pat Murphy said she and the town's personnel director, Alan Chapin, have offered to assist the commission with the job search.

-- Susan Tuz