May 29, 2009

Thursday and Friday’s Water News: Pittsburgh Water Main Break Leads to Traffic Delays

Posted in Florida, Indiana, Iowa, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nebraska, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Vermont at 4:11 pm by bengann

Pardon my lack of posting yesterday as I was under the weather, to make it up to you here is a supersized update.

Drivers on Pittsburgh’s South Side were met with traffic delays on Thursday morning, after thousands of gallons of water went gushing from a broken 16-inch main into the streets  leaving about 15 homes without water service.

Headlines
A break in a 24-inch water main closed a portion of a major road in West Springfield, Massachusetts, flooding it with about 2 million gallons of water and causing traffic problems.

The northbound lanes of a busy road in Utica, Michigan are closed because of a large water main break and the repairs are expected to take all day.

After more than four years of preparation, officials have broken ground on a state-of-the-art water filtration plant in East Chicago, Indiana. The $55 million facility will provide the purest drinking water currently available and replace the existing 45-year-old facility.

Stimulus Spotlight
The town of Wynot in the northeast corner of Nebraska is getting nearly $1.2 million in federal stimulus money for improvements to its water and wastewater systems.

Farmington, New Mexico has been awarded $2.1 million in federal and state funds to improve more than two miles of water piping–half paid through the federal stimulus bill and half through a state low-interest loan program.

U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced Thursday that 10 New York water and wastewater projects will receive $14.8 million through the federal stimulus package.

Money from the economic stimulus package will pay for the construction of nine miles of water pipelines in downtown Tampa and Davis Islands. The funding will come from a $23 million low-interest loan and a $2.5 million grant and is expected to create about 125 jobs beginning this October.

Sewer Rate News
Goshen, New York
Middlebury, Vermont
Portland, Oregon
Washington County, Oregon

May 27, 2009

Wednesday’s Water News: Norwich, Conn. Raising Rates to Finance Repairs

Posted in Connecticut, Florida, Indiana, North Carolina, West Virginia, Wisconsin at 5:27 pm by bengann

Norwich, Connecticut sewer users will receive a 40 percent hike in their sewer bills effective July 1 as the city embarks on a massive modernization effort on its wastewater treatment plant and other aging facilities.

Headlines
Friday is the earliest a boil order can be lifted for the city of Brazil, Indiana after a break in an 18-inch water line.

The village of Plover, Wisconsin is planning a $9.2 million upgrade to its wastewater treatment plant. The work is needed to help the plant handle a steady increase in users.

Stimulus Spotlight
The state of Florida is setting aside about $13 million in federal stimulus loans for building an estimated $15.5 million in drinking water and sewer projects in Vero Beach, Florida starting this fall.

In West Virginia, Huntington City Council must adopt a 23 percent sewer rate increase by early June or risk losing an opportunity for federal stimulus dollars. The city’s current rate does not meet the application requirements for federal stimulus funding that the state received for sewer projects earlier this year.

Sewer Rate News
Fort Wayne, Indiana
Hendersonville, North Carolina
Morgantown, West Virginia

May 26, 2009

Tuesday’s Water News: Momentum Grows to Stop Sewer Overflows into Saginaw River

Posted in California, Indiana, Louisiana, Michigan, Ohio, Utah, Vermont, West Virginia at 4:41 pm by bengann

In Michigan, momentum is growing  to stop sewage overflows into the Saginaw River although many cities are operating within their federal discharge permits.

Headlines
The Indiana Department of Environmental Managementhas issued a construction permit to the city of Muncie for improvements to a local life station.

County Health officials say rain pushed more than 30,000 gallonsof raw sewage into the streets of Bayou la Batre, Louisiana over the Memorial Day weekend.

On Friday, a water main break in Sandy, Utah sent water and rocks flying through the air.

Stimulus Spotlight
Water and sewer projects in Vermont will tap into $40 million in federal stimulus funding this year for needed system upgrades. The money, awarded as low-interest loans, will jump-start about 80 shovel-ready projects statewide.

Sewer Rate News
Long Beach, California
Marion, Ohio
Mason, West Virginia
Santa Clarita, California

May 20, 2009

Regular Posting Will Resume on May 26

Posted in Uncategorized at 4:29 am by bengann

I am currently at the National Utility Contractors Association 2009 Washington Summit and Spring Board Meeting. Regular posting on this blog will resume on Tuesday, May 26.

May 14, 2009

Thursday’s Water News: EPW Passes SRF Authorization

Posted in Kentucky, Massachusetts, Missouri, National, Pennsylvania, Virginia at 5:05 pm by bengann

The Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works today passed the Water Infrastructure Financing Act (S. 1005) which would authorize $20 billion for the Clean Water State Revolving Fund and $14.7 billion for the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund over the next five years. The legislation also includes $1.8 billion included for sewer overflow control grants and $1.43 billion in grants for critical drinking water infrastructure projects.

A similar bill, H.R. 1262, passed the House in March but only authorizes funding for the Clean Water SRF and not the Drinking Water SRF. The legislation must now be voted on by the full Senate and pass before going to conference. The Clean Water SRF and Drinking Water SRF have not been reauthorized in 22 years and 13 years, respectively.

Headlines
In Kentucky, about 20,000 Louisville Water Company customers have been put under a boil-water advisory after a 60-inch main broke Wednesday morning.

In Pittsburgh, a break yesterday in a 8-inch water main caused an 18-inch sewer to collapse causing a 25 feet wide and 15 feet deep in the middle of the road.

Stimulus Spotlight
The town of Boones Mill, Virginia will receive $3.3 million in stimulus money  from the state’s Drinking Water State Revolving Loan Fund which will fund a new filtration plant, electric water meters and replacement of waterlines.

Sewer Rate News
Agawam, Massachusetts
Joplin, Missouri

May 13, 2009

Wednesday’s Water News: Akron Proposes Plan to Fix Combined Sewers

Posted in Florida, Illinois, Indiana, North Carolina, Ohio, Wyoming at 5:01 pm by bengann

Don Plusquellic, Mayor of Akron, Ohio, has proposed ”a phased approach” aimed at fixing the city’s combined sewer problem. Akron has 35 combined sewers that overflow and dump diluted raw sewage and storm water into the waterways. The city is one of 86 Ohio communities with combined sewer overflow problems and eliminating the problem will cost an estimated $6.3 billion.

Headlines
Officials in Ironton, Ohio have  unveiled the timetable and requirements needed for the reconstruction of its heavily-dated combined sewer overflow system on the city’s north side.

A water main break in Muncie, Indiana on Tuesday afternoon backed up traffic and caused temporary water shutoffs to about 50 customers. 

Stimulus Spotlight
North Carolina Governor Beverly Perdue has recommended that Clay County be approved for $1.07 million from the Appalachian Regional Council in the first round of distributions from federal stimulus money. These funds would come from the state’s drinking water fund with half of the money in the form of a grant and the other half is a zero-interest 30-year loan.

The state of Wyoming Loan and Investment Board has awarded nearly $40 million in federal economic stimulus money for water projects around the state.  The total includes $19 million for wastewater projects and $19.5 million for drinking water projects that will fund 43 projects around Wyoming.

Sewer Rate News
Payson, Illinois
Temple Terrace, Florida

May 12, 2009

Tuesday Headlines: Next BIG Sewer Project Scheduled in Portland, Ore.

Posted in Arizona, California, Illinois, Maryland, North Carolina, Oregon, West Virginia, Wisconsin at 10:21 pm by bengann

Work is scheduled to begin next month on a massive sewer project in the Northwest Portland, Oregon industrial area as part of the city’s Big Pipe program.

Headlines
An eight-inch water-main break in Phoenix Tuesday afternoon has closed streets and left multiple homes with little or no water.

Service is expected to be restored Tuesday after a water main break in El Cajon, California. The burst 12-inch main spewed water causing the road and sidewalk to buckle.
 
Wisconsin state officials say municipal water construction projects will get a $143 million boost from federal stimulus funding. The application deadline is June 30, and priority is to go to projects ready to proceed to construction in 12 months or sooner.

Holly Springs, North Carolina will receive $81,600 in federal stimulus money for a solar-powered mixer to maintain water quality in one of the Town’s elevated storage tanks.

Sewer Rate News
Fruitland, Maryland
Hampshire, Illinois
Wheeling, West Virginia

May 11, 2009

Monday Headlines: Saginaw River Reaches Dubious Milestone

Posted in Alabama, California, Georgia, Louisiana, Michigan, New York, Ohio at 5:39 pm by bengann

More than 1 billion gallons of partially treated sewage has been dumped into the Saginaw River so far this year according to the Bay City Times. The city of Saginaw has been the largest contributor of CSOs to the river with approximately 904 million gallons.

Headlines
16 Thomas County, Georgia families have until the end of this month to move their mobile homes because a 30-year-old sewer plant that violates health regulations needs to be closed for repairs. But the families who live there say they can’t afford to move.

A crack in a 24 inch main created a canal along a busy street in downtown Syracuse, flooding basements of some buildings and creating a headache for city work crews.

The Sewerage and Water Board of New Orleans says that a large portion of Eastern New Orleans will be experiencing low water pressure until further notice due to a  break in a 50-inch water main.

Stimulus Spotlight
In Alabama, the cities of Birmingham and Montevallo are among a list of cities and communities set to receive a portion of $60 million in federal stimulus money for water and sewer projects.

Sewer Rate News
Marion, Ohio
Rewdwood City, California

May 7, 2009

Thursday Headlines: Allegheny County Estimates $30 Million Each for Projects

Posted in Alabama, DC, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Pennsylvania at 6:40 am by bengann

The Allegheny County Sanitary Authority (ALCOSAN)  has issued draft recommendations for sewage and storm water control and treatment facilities along the Allegheny River and the Monongahela River. Both projects would cost approximately $30 million each.

Headlines
A Washington, D.C. neighborhood was experiencing traffic delays after a 100-year-old twenty-inch feeder main broke sending water and mud gushing down the road soaking nearby basements.

In Alabama, the Mobile Area Water and Sewer System (MAWSS) responded to a sanitary sewer overflow after approximately 2,000 gallons of wastewater overflowed as a result of a blockage caused by debris and a grease blockage. 

Stimulus Spotlight
Kentucky utility districts in Boyd County and Greenup have been preliminarily approved to receive a combined total of nearly $2 million in federal stimulus funds to complete water and sewer projects.

Sewer Rate News
Fort Wayne, Indiana
West Branch, Michigan

May 6, 2009

Wednesday Headlines: Fort Wayne Rates May Double to Fund Sewer Projects

Posted in Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, National, Ohio, Oregon, Tennessee, Washington at 6:19 am by bengann

Under a funding proposal from Fort Wayne, Indiana’s Utilities Department, monthly sewer rates would nearly double in the next five years to construct the array of projects mandated to reduce combined-sewer overflows under the city’s consent decree with the EPA.

Headlines
Sewers are among the most popular projects among mayors for stimulus money. Of more than 18,000 projects on a wish-list compiled from more than 700 communities by the U.S. Conference of Mayors, more than 4,000 involved water or wastewater repairs or construction — second only to road projects.

Coquille, Oregon  issued a notice Monday that 10,000 gallons of raw sewage mixed rainwater spilled into the Coquille River on Friday night and into Saturday after 0.45 inches of rain fell sending a surge of stormwater into the Coquille Waste Water Plant.

Stimulus Spotlight
In Kentucky, $4 million in federal stimulus money will help cover the cost of a $20.5 million project to increase the water supply to a fast-growing area in eastern Jefferson County. According to estimates, the project will create more than 160 construction jobs.

Work has started on a $30 million upgrade of Arlington, Washington’s wastewater treatment plant, the first project in Snohomish County to be paid for in part by federal stimulus money.

Sewer Rate News
Columbus, Indiana
Goodlettsville, Tennessee
Statesboro, Georgia
Warren, Ohio

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