April 30, 2010

Friday’s Water News: Cedar Falls (Iowa) Needs Sewer System Fix

Posted in Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Michigan, Mississippi, Nevada, New York at 1:32 pm by bengann

Cedar Falls, Iowa needs to fix its sewer system or face the possibility of state and federal regulators halting future development in the city. Cedar Falls has a long-standing problem with too much storm water getting into its sewer system, causing overflows of wastewater at a lift station and sometimes overloading the main wastewater treatment plant, leading to dumping raw sewage into the river. 

120 thousand gallons of waters filled a street in Bonita Springs, Florida after a massive water main break. Collier County Utilities says an aeration valve broke because due to age. 

Elevated levels of uranium in domestic wells have forced residents of the Yerington Paiute Tribe Campbell Ranch Reservation in Nevada to drink bottled water since 2004. But the tribe has received a grant from USDA to build a water treatment facility and the extension of water lines on the reservation.

Stimulus Spotlight
Construction has begun to install a sewer system at Hide-A-Way Lake in Picayune, Mississippi. The total project will cost $5.9 million. The Utility Authority will be taking out a loan of about $800, 000 for the SRF and the remaining balance is being funded with economic stimulus funding.

Ophir, Colorado will be able to borrow up to $500,000 at a zero percent interest rate in economic stimulus funding to improve its water system. 

Sewer Rate News
Blooming, Grove, New York
Glendale, Arizona
Herkimer, New York
Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan

April 29, 2010

Thursday’s Water News: SW Virginia Community Plans $95M for Water and Sewer Projects

Posted in Colorado, Iowa, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Texas at 4:39 pm by bengann

With close to $95 million of water and sewer projects in the pipeline, Washington County, Virginia is embarking on the biggest capital improvement plan in its history. The work will translate into jobs for contractors and better water and sewer service for residents.

In Brooklyn, New York, as part of a $175 million, four-year program to reduce combined sewer overflow discharges into the Gowanus Canal, the flushing tunnel is now receiving its second major overhaul in a little over 10 years.

A major waterline in El Paso, Texas which broke earlier this week will be replaced  as early as this fall and will cost $1.2 million. the construction will replace about a mile-long stretch of a 24-inch-diameter water main that was installed in 1966 and has broken 22 times over the years.

Construction of a gas well wastewater treatment plant is coming to Lawrenceville, Pennsylvania to treat wastewater from drilling sites for re-use. The wastewater brought to the facility would consist exclusively of flowback and produced waters from gas wells. It would then be treated to meet industry and environmental standards, after which it would be ready to go back to a drilling site for re-use.

Stimulus Spotlight
Thanks to the economic stimulus, Mesa Verde National Park (Colo.) is receiving $11.5 million of the $14.6 million it needs to replace five miles of deteriorated waterline.

Sewer Rate News
Kings Mountain, North Carolina
Oelwein, Iowa
Rochester, New Hampshire
Scranton, Pennsylvania

April 28, 2010

Wednesday’s Water News: Massachusetts Sells $283M in Bonds for Water and Sewer Systems

Posted in California, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Oregon, Rhode Island at 1:02 pm by bengann

The Massachusetts Water Resources Authority (MWRA) has sold $283 million in tax exempt bonds, $30 million more than planned, to help finance construction and operations of water and sewer systems. $100 million in bonds will help fund construction while approximately $183 million will refinance existing debt, all backed by the agency’s revenue. MWRA provides water and sewer services to 43 percent of the state’s residents.

In an effort to jump-start a major renovation of its Lake Michigan water supply system, the village of Oak Lawn will receive $40 million in low-interest loans from the state EPA. The estimated $193 million renovation project would update and greatly expand an antiquated water system that now snakes through 257 miles of pipe, affecting about 100,000 hookups.

An 80-year-old water main ruptured yesterday in San Diego causing a large sinkhole and forcing the closure of a busy thoroughfare and connector road for hours.

In Rhode Island, the cost of replacing the water treatment plant that supplies most of Portsmouth and other parts of Aquidneck Island with its water and making other improvements to the island supply system could be as high as $87 million.

Stimulus Spotlight
More than $5 million in federal money is coming to Baraga, Michigan so the village can upgrade the water system. This includes a loan of more than $2.5 million through stimulus money and the remainder in the form of a grant.

Sewer Rate News
Cumberland, Maryland
Geneva, Illinois
Silverton, Oregon
Springfield, Illinois

April 27, 2010

Tuesday’s Water News: Topeka Water Main Break Causes Headaches for Motorists

Posted in Alabama, California, Connecticut, Indiana, Kansas, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Virginia at 6:30 pm by bengann

A major water main break over the weekend in Topeka, Kansas has narrowed a portion of a street to two lanes of traffic, and city officials say it may take at least two weeks before the roadway is back to normal. Though the 12-inch water main has been repaired, it will take about two weeks before pavement can be placed over it.

A grant and loan from the USDA will allow Woodstock Academy in Woodstock, Connecticut to connect to the town’s sewer line. The school is currently using a septic system. 

A follow-up to a story from yesterday, the Jefferson County Commission has agreed to file a lawsuit against an engineering firm over its design of a 60 million gallon wastewater treatment plant which can only treat about half of that amount.

Residents in Vandergrift, Pennsylvania may be stuck paying $16 million to separate its stormwater and sanitary sewers after failing to secure of federal grant to help fund the project.

Stimulus Spotlight
Plymouth, California has received a $2.8 million grant from the economic stimulus for a series of wastewater infrastructure projects. The projects include sewer main replacement, lining and repairs to the existing sewer system and storm drainage improvements.

In South Dakota, two Brookings-area communities will be included for water-project funding under the economic stimulus program. Kingbrook Rural Water System will receive a total of $7.89 million and the City of Estelline will receive a $1.9 million.

Sewer Rate News
Fairfax County, Virginia
Lower Merion Township, Pennsylvania
Marion, Ohio
New Albany, Indiana

April 26, 2010

Monday’s Water News: Fort Wayne Issues 72-Hour CSO Warning

Posted in Alabama, Connecticut, Indiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, New York, Pennsylvania, Texas at 6:37 pm by bengann

Officials in Fort Wayne, Indiana  have issued a Combined Sewer Overflow warning for the city advising resident to stay away from area rivers for the next 72 hours. These warnings are routinely triggered when a tenth of an inch of rain or more fall in the area. 

According to officials in Jefferson County, Alabama, a sewer plant designed to treat 60 million gallons of wastewater can treat only about half of that amount, and the flaw could lead to overflows and other permit violations. The design flaws are the latest in a series of costly problems for a sewer system that could bankrupt the county.

A water main break closed a street in the West End of Bridgeport, Connecticut for most of the day on Monday after a water main break collapsed the street in at least three places.

A 20-inch water main break late Friday afternoon in Philadelphia flooded basements and businesses. The break sent water gushing up through the pavement and appeared to have taken out a portion of the roadway.

Stimulus Spotlight
In New York, Monroe County has received $23.7 million from the economic stimulus for construction of a treatment plant. Construction is under way and county officials expect the project to generate 500 full-time jobs a year through its anticipated completion in 2013.

Portland, Michigan is moving ahead with a $2.8 million plan to upgrade its wastewater treatment facility after securing financing for the project through the USDA’s Rural Development program via the economic stimulus.

Sewer Rate News
Dunmore, Pennsylvania
East Grand Rapids, Michigan
Houston, Texas
Worcester, Massachusetts

April 23, 2010

Friday’s Water News: Ohio Community Receives CDBG Funds for Wastewater Treatment Plant

Posted in Arkansas, Florida, New Hampshire, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia at 12:31 pm by bengann

Federal funds will soon be coming to Ohio City, Ohio to build a new wastewater treatment plant. $500,000 from the Community Development Block Grant will pick up 20 percent of the approximately $2.5 million cost to complete construction of the project. The rest of the cost will be paid for by village residents by securing a low-interest loan for the outstanding amount which will then be repaid with a sewer surcharge on their monthly bills.

A precautionary boil water advisory was issued last night for 225 residents in a Sarasota County, Florida apartment complex after a 2-inch water main break.

Officials in Anderson County, South Carolina must figure out a way to address a $1.3 million in its sewer fund.

In Ohio, Gallia County has reached an agreement with the City of Gallipolis for both phases of the Green Township sewer project has been reached. Phase one of the project will not begin until 2012.

Stimulus Spotlight
North Little Rock, Arkansas will receive $2.8 million from the economic stimulus to install sewer lines for 300 residents currently using septic tanks for wastewater disposal. In addition to the stimulus funding, the USDA is providing a $1 million grant to fund the project.

$8.9 million from the USDA by way of the economic stimulus will allow West Carroll Township, Pennsylvania to build a new water treatment system. The project will include a new plant to replace two obsolete plants, 3 miles of new and replacement pipelines and an intake system to improve water quality and pressure.

Sewer Rate News
Exeter, New Hampshire
King County, Washington
Staunton, Virginia

April 22, 2010

Thursday’s Water News: Lincoln, Nebraska Estimates $133M Needed for Water System

Posted in Connecticut, Iowa, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nebraska, New Jersey, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin at 1:50 pm by bengann

The city of Lincoln, Nebraska estimates it may need as much as $133 million in improvements over the next 25 years to improve its water distribution system. The city has 45 miles of pipe that is more than 100 years old and 115 miles have been around for 80 to 100 years.

In Pennsylvania, the York City Council has voted unanimously to allow its sewer authority to borrow $23 million to complete federally mandated improvements at its wastewater treatment plant. The upgrades are part of a multi-state effort to clean up the Chesapeake Bay.

To celebrate Earth Day, the USDA had a ground breaking event today for the rehabilitation and construction of a water and sewer system in Stetsonville, Wisconsin. The projects include construction of a full water system and partial replacement of sanitary sewer mains. 

Stimulus Spotlight
Connecticut Governor Jodi Rell was in the town of Ridgefield yesterday to tout the $1.4 million in economic stimulus funding that will extend a water line more than 8,000 feet providing potable water to two elementary schools.

Despite some initial confusion, Haldeon, New Jersey is set to begin a $1.9 million sewer line project. For the past 30 years, storm water backups involving deteriorated sewer lines have caused raw sewage to back flush into some homes during heavy rains. Most of the funding for the project will come from a no-interest loan provided by the economic stimulus.

Sewer Rate News
Canton Township, Michigan
Johnston, Iowa
Pilot Rock, Oregon
West Boylston, Massachusetts

April 21, 2010

Wednesday’s Water News: Wichita Falls Works on Drainage Following Wet Weather Events

Posted in California, Illinois, Louisiana, Michigan, Missouri, National, Ohio, Texas at 1:38 pm by bengann

Wichita Falls, Texas has two projects underway to help with the drainage of stormwater during periods of heavy rain. In the past, heavy rains have created flooding problems and hazardous conditions for motorists. Despite these two projects the city has a lot of work left to do as it has identified about 60 other problem spots that need drainage help. 

Some Los Angeles residents are complaining that the city is dragging its feet in paying them for damages suffered last fall when a 62-inch water pipe burst and sent hundreds of thousands of gallons of water pouring into homes.

A clogged sewer line in Kansas City has led to thousands of gallons of untreated wastewater spilling into the Blue River.

Tight budgets and falling revenues are prompting municipalities across the country to consider selling their water and sewer systems to private companies, according to USA Today.

Stimulus Spotlight
With work well underway on this year’s series of water and sewer main upgrades in Harbor Springs, Michigan, the city council has agreed to sell $1.755 million in “Build America Bonds” provided under the  economic stimulus to finance the projects.

Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal has targeted $3.7 million for the city of West Monroe’s Sparta Reuse project in a supplemental appropriations request. The project will cost more than $10 million and is being partially funded with $4.75 million from the economic stimulus.

Sewer Rate News
Bakersfield, California
Laguna Beach, California
Lockport, Illinois
Mount Vernon, Ohio

April 20, 2010

Tuesday’s Water News: Arkansas Community Seeks $25M Loan for Water Projects

Posted in Arkansas, Colorado, Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, New Mexico, Ohio, Tennessee at 5:16 pm by bengann

In Jacksonville, Arkansas, the City Council supports a plan by the water department to secure $25 million in loan funds from the state’s National Resources Commission to pay for four major capital improvement projects. The projects will include adding new water lines and replacement of a ground water storage tank. 

Work has begun on a new wastewater treatment plant for Sweetwater, Tennessee. The city will finance the project with a $6.5 million bond that it will pay back over the next 20 years.

A broken water main break in a Las Cruces, New Mexico caused a gas line to leak this morning.

Minnesota’s Public Facilities Authority will provide $12.3 million in financing to seven cities for drinking water and waste water improvements.

Stimulus Spotlight
In Loveland, Colorado, the Bureau of Reclamation has received $12.2 million from the economic stimulus to recoat the penstocks above the Flatiron Power Plant. The penstocks are large pipes that carry water from a reservoir to a nearby power plant behind a lake which provides water and power in northeastern Colorado.

Despite the inconvenience for some Galion, Ohio residents, construction of two pump stations and a main line to the wastewater treatment plant should be completed in August. Part of the $5.3 million project will be funded via $3.4 million in economic stimulus funds.

Sewer Rate News
Belgrade, Montana
Cadillac, Michigan
Charleston, Illinois
Spring Hill, Tennessee

April 19, 2010

Monday’s Water News: Bay County, Mich. Launches $30M Sewer Improvement Project

Posted in Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Jersey, Pennsylvania at 5:12 pm by bengann

The Bay County, Michigan wastewater treatment plant has launched a $30 million improvement project that will eliminate sewage overflows to the Saginaw River. The work includes construction of a 53 million-gallon retention basin to hold combined sewage and stormwater during heavy rain and snowmelt events.

A $1.1 million shortfall in the Cocoa, Florida’s water department budget has prompted a review by the city manager’s office. Most of the cost overruns were due to a high number of water main breaks and an aggressive program to change out meters.

A break in a 12-inch main in Holyoke, Massachusetts on Saturday caused a torrent of muddy water to be released on a road causing the street to crack wide open.

Stimulus Spotlight
Minersville, Pennsylvania received a $2.3 million grant in federal stimulus money to upgrade its 35-year-old sewer treatment facility. The project, is expected to be completed by the end of the year, and  includes replacing 1,500 feet of the 18-inch main pipe coming into the plant with 24-inch pipe to provide extra capacity in times of high flow.

Haldeon, New Jersey could receive up to $1.7 million in economic stimulus funding to replace sewer lines that are more than a century old and have storm water backups during heavy rains.

Sewer Rate News
Anthem, Arizona
Hannibal, New Jersey
Ocean City, Maryland
Woodstock, Georgia

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