The state of New York recently announced nearly $25 million in water infrastructure grants would be distributed to North Country communities for 13 projects.
New York’s Clean Water Infrastructure Improvement Act of 2017 allocated $2.5 billion to preserve water quality across the state. In early/mid?-November, Governor Andrew Cuomo’s announced $270 million in grants would be distributed statewide, including $24.6 million for projects in the North Country.
The Town of Crown Point is in line for more than $1.2 million. Supervisor Charlie Harrington says that to comply with a consent order from the state Department of Environmental Conservation, the town plans to build a new wastewater treatment plant. “Our existing plant is antiquated to the extent that any and all repairs have to be specifically made by a machinist. So it certainly points to just build a new wastewater treatment plant.”
Harrington says the state grant will help Crown Point build a sand-filtered treatment plant. “It certainly goes a long way in attempting to keep our user fees below the state requirements and we are hopeful to receive other funds as well.”
The Town of Plattsburgh is expected to get just over $3.1 million for drinking water system improvements. The town is in the midst of a multi-year plan to upgrade its water infrastructure and Deputy Supervisor Meg LeFevre says the grant will fund some of the drinking water portion of the capital plan. “We have some really great experts who were able to bring this Capital Improvement Plan together over a couple years of planning. And now the state has come forward to recognize the importance of investing in infrastructure. So we’ll be dealing with water mains on the Old Base, upgrading booster pumps at one of our main stations, we’ll be creating redundancies within the system and well improvements.”
The city of Plattsburgh is scheduled to receive about $4.3 million for upgrades to its Water Pollution Control Plant, which is located at the confluence of the Saranac River and Lake Champlain. Mayor Colin Read says the state grant covers about a quarter of the upgrade costs. “There’s a number of different improvements we’re going to be able to make that are spelled out in the grant: odor control around our sludge de-watering facility there, covers and odor control over our aeration tanks, some aesthetic visual control around the plant itself. These are improvements these aren’t just regular maintenance. These are to make the plant better, more aesthetically appealing, better for our lake, better odor control, visual control and hopefully will allow us to have much greater likelihood of development down in that area by doing so. So we’re pretty excited about it.”
The grants announced by the governor’s office are intended to fund clean and drinking water projects in Essex, Jefferson, Lewis, Clinton, Franklin and Hamilton counties.