May 20, 2010

Thursday’s Water News: Tax Extenders Bill Has Good News for Water Infrastructure

Posted in Georgia, Illinois, Missouri, National, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon at 5:19 pm by bengann

Today, Senator Max Baucus (D-Mont.), Chairman  of the Senate Finance Committee, and Rep. Sander Levin (D-Mich.), Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, released an agreement on a “Tax Extenders” bill (H.R. 4213) which includes a provision that would exempt water and wastewater projects funded via private activity bonds (PAB) from the state volume cap.

The Senate Finance Committee estimates the PAB provision will cost $372 million over 10 years, and is identical to the Sustainable Water Infrastructure Investment Act (S. 3262) introduced several weeks ago by Sen. Menendez (D-N.J.). A summary of H.R. 4213, the “Tax Extenders” bill, can be found here.

Headlines
Oak Lawn, Illinois will use a $40 million loan from the state’s EPA to jump-start its water distribution system upgrade. The total cost of the project that would modernize the waterworks and increase its pumping capacity is between $100 million and $200 million.

Work crews in Hasbrouck Heights, New Jersey worked Wednesday night to repair a large sinkhole on State Route 17 created by a water main break.

Stimulus Spotlight
In New Mexico, the Albuquerque Bernalillo County Water Utility Authority has started a $30 million irrigation project will add new pipeline to pump treated wastewater to parks, fields and other recreational areas. A portion of the project is funded through the economic stimulus. 

Missouri Governor Jay Nixon has announced his state has been rated first in the nation in using federal stimulus money for wastewater improvement projects.

Sewer Rate News
Centerville, Georgia
Granville, Ohio
Hickory, North Carolina
Portland, Oregon

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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. 

Headlines
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 13, 2010

Tuesday’s Water News: More than 10,000 Navajo Citizens to Get Access to Running Water

Posted in California, Georgia, Iowa, Louisiana, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Pennsylvania at 10:31 am by bradhannon

More than 10,000 Navajo citizens are expected to get access to running water within two years following dedication Monday of the Eastern Navajo Waterline Project.  The dedication ceremony, held in Counselor, New Mexico, kicked off a $29 million project that will cross four counties and eight chapters.  The four-phase project is part of the Omnibus Public Land Management Act signed into law by President Barack Obama in April 2009.

Headlines
Pennsylvania American Water said Monday that it has started a series of water main replacement projects in East Pennsboro Township, Pennsylvania to improve service reliability and improve fire protection for residents. The combined cost of the upgrades is roughly $620,000.  PAWC is installing about 4,100 feet of new 8-inch pipe along East Pennsboro streets.

Dutchess County, New York lawmakers on Monday reaffirmed their support of a plan to bring a central sewer system to the commercial center in the town of Red Hook. The project’s estimated cost is about $7.6 million. Roughly $3.4 million would be financed through a Rural Development Grant from the USDA.

Stimulus Spotlight
Haledon and North Haledon, New Jersey will be able to upgrade their century-old water and sewer systems with more than $5 million in federal financing, Rep Bill Pascrell said Monday.  $3.7 million of that funding will come from the economic stimulus with $2.5 million of the financing being subject to principal forgiveness and $1.26 million as a no interest loan. 

Water and sewage service in small-town southern Iowa will get a big boost in the coming years thanks to funding from the federal stimulus package.  Southern Iowa Rural Water Association  plans to spend more than $10 million in loans and grants allocated to them through the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act on multiple projects to begin in the next two years.

Sewer Rate News
Athens, Georgia
Greenfield, California
Gretna, Louisiana
Terrebonne Parish, Louisiana

March 23, 2010

Tuesday’s Water News: Work Started on New Mexico Water Project

Posted in Florida, Iowa, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oklahoma, West Virginia at 10:58 am by bradhannon

Survey work in New Mexico has begun on the western portion of the Navajo Gallup Water Supply Project, an undertaking that promises 250,000 American Indian residents drinking water by the year 2040.  The $870 million project will divert nearly 38,000 acre-feet of water it will consist of 260 miles of pipeline and 24 pumping plants.

Headlines
In Florida, the West Palm Beach City Commission appeared to embrace  a water supply and treatment plan officials said will improve the quality and quantity of the city water supply at the lowest long-term cost.  The new upgrades would cost $72.7 million with an annual operating cost of $6.2 million. They will be funded through bonds.

About 600 customers in the small Seminole County community of Konawa, Oklahoma have gone without drinking water or with limited water since last Thursday because of a combination of a pump breakdown and water line leaks.

Stimulus Spotlight
West Virginia American Water got the go-ahead Monday for an $11 million project to upgrade or replace water lines from Belle to Montgomery.  Members of the Kanawha County Commission gave approval for the water company to secure $11 million in low-interest loans to complete the project. Funding will be through a federal economic stimulus program that pays 45 percent of the interest on the loans.

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack has announced economic funding for three projects in western Iowa to improve water quality and public sanitation services.

Sewer Rate News
Dunkirk, New York
Ewing, New Jersey
Red Bank, New Jersey

February 26, 2010

Friday’s Water News: Socorro, N.M. Receives $1.28M to Expand Sewer Service

Posted in California, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, New Mexico, Ohio, South Carolina, Virginia, Washington at 7:47 pm by bradhannon

New Mexico Senator Jeff Bingaman and USDA Rural Development State Director Terry Brunner presented a check for $1.28 million to the City of Socorro, New Mexico.  The funding came from the USDA Rural Development’s Community Programs to expand sewer service to 54 homes.

Headlines
A water main break on Granby Street in Norfolk, Virginia shut down traffic Thursday night and officials will keep the road closed through mid-day Saturday.

School was closed in Rowan County, Kentucky Tuesday due to a water main break just off Flemingsburg Road near the high school.  The break was under a gas line, which made the repair a little bit more complicated.

According to the EPA Columbia, South Carolina has leaked large amounts of sewage into local rivers. Between January 2008 and November 2009, EPA records show 257 instances of sanitary sewer overflows impacting local waterways. In the 257 events, more than 3.3 million gallons of sewage went into local waterways.

Stimulus Spotlight
Almost $600,000 in federal stimulus money has been awarded to the Austinburg, Ohio sanitary sewer project.  The Ashtabula County Board of Commissioners announced the additional funding Thursday, bringing the total award from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 to $1,422,920.

A $5 million wastewater facility expansion project funded partially through federal stimulus money got under way officially Tuesday morning in Gridley, California.  The project calls for upgrading the plant to a high-rate headworks facility that will increase the plant’s capacity to 1.7 million gallons per day.  The project will also replace aging sewer lines in the city.

Sewer Rate News
Arlington, Washington
Chesterfield, Indiana
West Branch, Iowa

February 3, 2010

Wednesday’s Water News: State of Iowa Awards $2.5M for Wastewater Project

Posted in Arizona, California, Illinois, Iowa, New Mexico, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, West Virginia at 3:40 pm by bradhannon

Iowa Governor Chet Culver has announced that the Town of Clinton will be receiving $2.5 million from the state to help construct a new wastewater treatment plant and pump station. The award–which was made possible by a statewide construction program called I-JOBS–has spent $55 million in water infrastructure improvements across the state.

Headlines
A 16-inch main broke this morning in a residential area of Northridge, California, prompting a water-service interruption that affected nearby apartment residents.  Water from the broken main flooded the street several inches deep and surrounded three parked vehicles.

The city of Mt. Vernon, Illinois has applied for a $1.1 million low-interest loan from the state’s EPA to extend sewer lines into areas opened for development by a new overpass and interchange. The loan is expected to cover the entire cost of the project.

Stimulus Spotlight
The Town of Roslyn, South Dakota is making improvements to its water and sewer system with assistance from the American Recovery Reinvestment Act through a USDA Rural Development Water and Waste Direct Loan in the amount of $415,000 and a Grant of $873,000.

Farmington, New Mexico has awarded a bid for its first stimulus infrastructure project to a local construction company claiming it could create as many as five jobs. The city will pay more than $2.1 million to install pipes carrying drinking water in the downtown area.

Sewer Rate News
Columbia, South Carolina
Falkville, Tennessee
Moundsville, West Virginia
Sedona, Arizona

November 10, 2009

Tuesday Headlines: Delaware Wastewater Project Nears Completion

Posted in Colorado, Delaware, Illinois, Massachusetts, Michigan, Montana, New Mexico, South Carolina at 8:20 pm by bengann

A long-awaited and controversial wastewater system project in Rehoboth, Delaware should be completed later this month, but will cost $28,000 more than the original estimate of $950,000 because of the rainy summer.

Headlines
The city of Dearborn, Michigan may seek to extend the deadline for completing its federally mandated Combined Sewer Overflow project beyond 2012.

A water main break on a major thoroughfare in Spartanburg, South Carolina on Monday evening, closing a section of one of the city’s busiest streets.

Stimulus Spotlight
The city council in Carlsbad, New Mexico is expected to approve a resolution today that authorizes the city to accept a $1.3 million state grant and receive a loan of $592,000 to replace water lines. The grant portion of the funding is from the economic stimulus.

As part of the economic stimulus, the state of Massachusetts  has awarded $750,266 in grants to 11 communities for projects to conduct watershed nonpoint source pollution assessment and planning work to address water quality impairments.

Sewer Rate News
Grand Rapids, Michigan
Jacksonville, Illinois
Log Lane Village, Colorado
Missoula, Montana

August 6, 2009

Thursday’s Water News: Indianapolis Mayor Seeks Advice On Improving Water and Wastewater Systems

Posted in Arizona, Indiana, National, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas at 3:00 pm by pjtabit

Yesterday the mayor of Indianapolis, Indiana released a “request for expressions of interest” (REI) for suggestions to improve the city’s water and wastewater systems.  According to the mayor, the city requires $3 billion in improvements over fifteen years.

Headlines
A broken sewage line in Phoenix, Arizona has closed a busy intersection after causing several sinkholes.  Officials warn that traffic in the area will be restricted for months while repairs are made.

The EPA  announced yesterday that it will conduct a review of its current policy regarding water supplies containing perchlorate, a toxic chemical contained in rocket fuel and fireworks.  Currently the EPA does not regulate the chemical’s presence in the water supply.

Stimulus Spotlight
The EPA will grant $93 million in stimulus funds  to the Pennsylvania Infrastructure Investment Authority (PENNVEST) for improvements to improve aging water infrastructure.  The funds will go to the state’s Clean Water Revolving Fund program.

The USDA Rural Development Agency has allocated $1.36 million in federal funding to Woodridge, New York to replace its wastewater treatment plan, and perform other system improvements.  In all, the city will invest over $4 million in the project.

Sewer Rates
Milwaukie, Oregon
Santa Fe, New Mexico
Lake Jackson, Texas

July 23, 2009

Thursday’s Water News: Car Driven into Sinkhole After Water Main Break Erodes Ground

Posted in Alabama, California, Colorado, Delaware, Massachusetts, New Mexico, Pennsylvania at 3:58 pm by Colleen Wetherill

In Alamogordo, New Mexico, a driver did not see a hazard in the road and drove his car into a sinkhole. A water main break possibly caused by corroded a pipe eroded the ground and formed the sinkhole that the driver did not avoid.

Headlines
Owners of property along East Blackwell Street in Dover, New Jersey were told to boil tap water on Wednesday before using it to cook, clean, or drink, due to a water main break that occurred earlier that morning.

The state of Pennsylvania has targeted $355 million for 111 clean-water projects, which will include several projects within the northeast region.

Work on the rehabilitation of sewer in the Eden area of Pell City, Alabama should begin sometime next week. The project is one of several that is required by a 2006 agreement between the city and the Alabama Department of Environmental Management.

Stimulus Spotlight
More than $3.2 million in federal stimulus funds have been earmarked for the city of Long Beach, California’s effort to improve the the Colorado Lagoon’s water quality.

Sewer Rate News
Riverbank, California
Farmingham, Massachusetts
Hayward, California

July 15, 2009

Wednesday’s Water News: Blumenauer Introduces Legislation Establishing Clean Water Trust Fund

Posted in Alabama, Missouri, National, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Tennessee at 11:48 am by bengann

Today, Congressman Earl Blumenauer (D-Oregon) is introducing a bill today, the Water Protection and Reinvestment Act, which would establish a trust fund to invest in water and sewer infrastructure. Supported by a bipartisan group of lawmakers, as currently proposed the bill would raise about $10 billion a year to fix aging water and sewer systems.

Headlines
To take care of the city’s growing flooding problem during periods of heavy rain, officials in Urbana (Ill.) are considering a new storm sewer service tax in order to upgrade the city’s storm water sewer system.

$17.5 million from the H2O PA program is on the way to Cambria County, Pennsylvania for much-needed water and sewer projects.

The city of Prattville, Alabama reported a sewage leak Monday, its third spill in the same area to occur in the past two months. A series of heavy thunderstorms that moved through the area on Monday is believed to have , cause the line to fail.

Stimulus Spotlight
Approximately $34.5 million is coming to New Mexico for water projects under the federal stimulus plan. $15 million will be awarded to the state’s Clean Water State Revolving Fund and $19.5 million will be awarded to the state’s Drinking Water State Revolving Fund.

Sewer Rate News
Grenneville, Tennessee
North Kansas City, Missouri

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