For Immediate Release
April 24, 2009

KDHE Office of Communications
communications@kdheks.gov, 785-296-0461

KDHE to help create jobs by funding
wastewater infrastructure projects across Kansas

American Recovery Act resources will support 12 projects in communities throughout the state

Communities across Kansas will see the creation of new jobs thanks to the Kansas Department of Health and Environment’s (KDHE) selection of 12 projects to improve Kansas’ wastewater infrastructure.  The projects will be funded almost entirely through monies provided by the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act of 2009. 

“This funding will not only help create much-needed jobs, but will have a major impact on communities in need of these important infrastructure projects,” said Roderick L. Bremby, Secretary of KDHE.  “Clean water is essential to Kansas communities and the funding provided through the American Recovery Act will allow for projects to be built that might otherwise have taken years to come to fruition.”

Earlier this month, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced that it had awarded $35 million in Recovery Act funding to KDHE to improve wastewater infrastructure across the state.  The funds went to Kansas’ Clean Water State Revolving Fund program which provides low-interest loans for water quality protection projects for wastewater treatment, non-point source pollution control and watershed and estuary management.

At least 20 percent of the funds provided under the Recovery Act are to be used for green infrastructure, water and energy efficiency improvements and other environmentally innovative projects.  Each of KDHE’s selected wastewater projects has a green component to it.  Some of those components include the reduction of electricity needs, the use of solar-powered energy and the completion of system-wide energy audits.

KDHE plans to supplement the $35 million in Recovery Act resources with other monies from its Clean Water State Revolving Fund to fund projects costing just over $36 million.  To-date, KDHE has selected 12 projects estimated at just over $29 million.  Each of the 12 selected projects includes some portion of funding on which the principal will be forgiven.  The remainder of each project’s funding is being provided as a low-interest loan.  For the additional $7 million in funding that is available, KDHE is soliciting additional innovative green project proposals that will provide stormwater water quality enhancements and treatment of non-point sources of pollution.

Cities and counties across Kansas submitted about 70 project proposals for funding consideration. Proposals were reviewed by KDHE staff who made the selections based on readiness to proceed and the green component included in the project.

The projects selected to receive funding are:

City of Bucklin
Estimated cost:  $766,000
This project will rehabilitate the existing wastewater treatment lagoon, and also provide solar powered mixers to enhance treatment and produce a better quality discharge.

City of Colby   
Estimated cost:  $70,500
This project will construct a new pumping station and pipeline to deliver treated wastewater effluent for irrigation at the municipal softball and baseball fields.  This will reduce the use of treated potable water in these irrigation efforts.

City of Hutchinson
Estimated cost:  $4.7 million
This project will provide equipment replacement, upgrade improvements, and various rehabilitation to the waste sludge anaerobic digestion system.  Benefits will include continued digester gas capture and reuse for heating, as well as waste sludge dewatering to reduce energy usage.

City of Jetmore
Estimated cost:  $1.6 million
This project will construct a new wastewater treatment lagoon to replace the existing mechanical wastewater treatment facility.  Doing this will reduce energy usage and provide the potential for irrigation reuse of the treated effluent.

Johnson County Wastewater
Estimated cost:  $15.6 million
Two projects were selected; the first will construct sludge handling improvements to the Douglas L. Smith Indian Creek Middle Basin wastewater treatment facility.  This will include a new storage basin for fats, oils and grease, expansion of the anaerobic digestion sludge treatment system and digester gas handling system, and new co-gen power production system to burn digester gas and produce hot water for heating and electricity for on-site usage.  The second project will provide funding for a system-wide energy audit of the Johnson County Wastewater Utility.

City of Leoti
Estimated cost:  $123,000
This project will construct a new pumping station and pipeline to deliver treated wastewater effluent for irrigation at the municipal golf course.  Doing this will reduce the use of treated potable water for irrigation purposes.

City of Lindsborg  
Estimated cost:  $5.4 million
This project will rehabilitate and upgrade the existing wastewater treatment process to both improve effluent quality and reduce power use.  This project will also provide irrigation reuse of effluent at the municipal golf course which will reduce the use of treated potable water.

City of Oberlin
Estimated cost:  $174,000
This project will provide several solar-powered mixers for the wastewater treatment lagoon.  This will alleviate odor and treatment problems as well as eliminate the use of chemicals for odor control.

City of Pittsburg
Estimated cost:  $1.3 million
Two projects were selected; the first will provide funding for the purchase of equipment that will allow the City to investigate the physical condition of the wastewater collection system.  This will enable to the City to locate defects which contribute to infiltration and inflow.  The second project will upgrade the electrical system of an existing major sewage pumping station and reduce power use.

City of Topeka
Estimated cost:  $55,000
This project will provide funding for an energy audit of the Topeka-North Wastewater Treatment Facility.