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Milltown sewer plant 'high priority' for HC commissioners

July 17, 2019
Milltown officials hope another try at securing funding will be fruitful for a wastewater treatment plant rehabilitation project.

For the second time this year, the Harrison County Board of Commissioners approved the Town of Milltown to seek up to $450,000 from the Harrison County Council to go toward rebuilding the Milltown plant.

"Emphasis has been placed on our previous request from Harrison County officials for funding our wastewater treatment plant," Bill Byrd, the Milltown representative who also serves on the Harrison County Regional Sewer District board, said.

The cost of the project is expected to total $1.6 million. Harrison County holds a 30-percent reserve on the plant's capacity, which is why Harrison County officials have been asked to help contribute to the work.

"We are going to again request $450,000, or, again, whatever Harrison County can afford, and adjust the capacity to match whatever the funding may be," Byrd said.

The plan right now is to rebuild the plant to the same capacity, which is about 150,000 gallons daily.

Byrd said Crawford County has committed $20,000 to the project, with the requirement that Marengo pump its wastewater to the Milltown plant. Leaders are searching for grants and other funding to help cover the costs. He added the Town of Milltown also is willing to take out a loan, if needed, to make the project happen.

Commissioner Charlie Crawford, at the commissioners' meeting on July 1, said he didn't think the request needed a motion from the board to approach the Harrison County Council again. However, Commissioner Kenny Saulman said it would be best to make a motion and make sure the council is told it comes with a high priority.

"I think that wording ought to be in there," Saulman said.

Crawford said he knew the council had asked Byrd to come back after Crawford County announced what it would contribute.

Byrd was not at Harrison County Council's July 8 meeting to update the council about the status of the project. The commissioners met again Monday.

In other business, the commissioners approved and adopted the county's local road safety plan.

Kevin Russel, Harrison County's highway engineer, spent the last year working with the Federal Highway Administration and the Local Transportation Assistance Program to develop the first-of-its-kind safety plan at the county level in Indiana, Russel said.

The plan includes a "Toward Zero Deaths" strategy. A national effort, under the same name, calls for safety plans that prioritize traffic safety culture while making efforts to reduce fatalities and serious injuries relating to traffic crashes.

A hard copy of the plan should soon be available to read at the Harrison County Public Library's Corydon location. It also can be read at the highway department's office.

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