The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

Local News

April 15, 2008

7:37 p.m.: Alex capitalizes on state loan

ALEXANDRIA — A recent move by city officials will save Alexandria $1.5 million over the next 20 years, according to Mayor Jack Woods.

The city closed on the $5 million loan Friday through the Indiana Finance Authority with plans to use the money to expand its wastewater treatment plant.

The $5 million will come from the Finance Authority’s Wastewater State Revolving Fund, which offers a lower interest than traditional finance institutions. “It’s the lowest interest we could find,” Woods said.

Gov. Mitch Daniels created the Finance Authority in 2005 to manage state-related financial programs including wastewater and drinking water state revolving fund programs under one entity. So far, the state revolving fund programs have loaned more than $492 million to local communities at low-interest rates. This, according to the authority, has saved utility customers more than $82 million in interest.

“We are pleased to offer an economical way for communities to address infrastructure needs that lead to a cleaner environment and excellent quality of life for current and future residents of our state,” said Jennifer Alvey, state public finance director.

Wastewater Superintendent Roger Thomas says the city needs to expand its wastewater treatment plant to meet the sewer demands of Alexandria’s 6,000-plus residents. “Our peak capacity is 3.6 million gallons. Normally, we put more than that through here. Our daily average flow was designed at 1.2 million gallons per day but we always do two million, especially this time of year.”

The new system, Thomas says, will raise capacity to meet demand even during heavy rains, when demand increases substantially. “What they’re going to do is up my daily average flow to two million and make the peak capacity at six million. That’ll help us in heavy rain situations. All your water off your streets — it all comes into the sewer.”

Woods says the city is also looking for grants to fund a separation of storm water and wastewater systems. “We are told by the state that we have to separate sewer and storm water.”

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