Wastewater groundbreaking ceremony held

By Buck Traxler, I-O Editor
Wastewater groundbreaking ceremony held
GROUND BREAKING — There was a ceremonial groundbreaking on Wednesday afternoon to celebrate the $5.5 million City of Conrad wastewater treatment plant upgrades. Taking part in the groundbreaking, from the left in front are; Agnes Fowler, City Finance Officer; Jerry Paddock, DEQ/SRF; Travis Meyer, Project Engineer; Dick Anderson Construction; Mayor John Shevlin; Randy Roberts, USDA/RD; Josh DeVos, DA; and LeAnn Books Morrison Maierle, Inc. In the back are Bill Strong, Inspector M&,M; Wendy Judisch, City Councilwoman; Rich Anderson, Public Works Director; Bill Emerson, DA; and Darrell Silvan, DA. The major portion of the project is estimated to be completed by Oct. 2010. I-O Photo by Buck Traxler
   Wednesday afternoon a ceremonial groundbreaking was held at the wastewater lagoons to make the proceeding with the construct of wastewater system improvements.
   Years in development and planning, the $5.5 million project is funded with local funds and a combination of grants and loan funds.
   The improvements were designed by Morrison-Maierle engineers and will serve a project population base of about 2,577 people.
   The city council helped developed the project and associated budget to ensure the costs would be spread equitably among existing system users within Conrad.
   Mayor John Shevlin commented, “This will benefit every resident of the City of Conrad as well as allow the city to completely update the existing facility so that it will comply with current discharge standards and meet the future regulatory requirements.”
   The proposed improvements will eliminate the regular effluent permit violations that have been the city has had for over fur years form DEQ (Department of Environmental Quality) and will upgrade equipment so that it is serviceable and reliable for the next 20 years.
   Funding for the project has come through and from the Montana Department of Commerce Treasure State Endowment Program (TSEP); the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Water Resource Development Act of 1990 – Section 595 Funding; the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s State and Tribal Assistance Grant (STAG) program; the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act; the U.S.  Department of Agriculture’s Rural Development (USDA/RD) loan program; and the Montana DEQ Water Pollution Control State Revolving Fund loan program Randy Roberts from the USDA/RD told the I-O, “This is what we’re all about, helping people and communities.”
   Letters from Sen. Max Baucus and Rep. Denny Rehberg were read. Both members of the Congressional delegation noted they were sorry they couldn’t be here, and in their own words congratulated the community on this public health project.
   Construction of this project is scheduled to begin in June. It is estimated to be completed by October 2010.
   The work project includes: New partially-mixed aerated lagoon system capable of regularly complying with current discharge requirements and greatly improving ammonia reduction.
   A new nitrification reactor cell will provide for further ammonia removal to comply with anticipated ammonia limits in 2011.
   In addition a new ultraviolet disinfection facility will comply with E. coli Bacteria discharge limits and sludge dredging and in-situ sludge management required by 2011 by the current permit will be attained.
   Dick Anderson Construction will be doing the project work. In closing, the Mayor said, “OK, lets move some dirt!”
Travis Meyer of Anderson Construction added, “That’s it, we want to get to work.”