Carthage Wastewater Treatment Plant Upgrades

Carthage Wastewater Treatment Plant Upgrades

One of the questions facing Carthage voters on August 5th, is a decision on a wastewater bond.
CARTHAGE, MO.--- More election signs are popping up as the August 5th primary nears. One of the signs you may see, the Carthage bond issue. 

"This bond will upgrade our wastewater treatment plant. The upgrades are going to be required," said Robert Williams, General Manager.

The $6 million revenue bond would go toward upgrading the city's current wastewater plant in order to meet EPA and Missouri DNR regulations.

"In order to do that, we have to have new equipment, new aeration, other additions to the plant," said Williams. 

Upcoming regulations require that the City of Carthage will have to cut their ammonia release into the Spring River by 50%.

"This is something that we will have to do," he said. 

Mark Elliff says the Carthage Chamber of Commerce is backing the bond, because not only is it good for the environment, but also business.

"New businesses, new industries that are looking to coming into the community, one of the first things they ask is how your waste water treatment facility," said Mark Elliff, Carthage Chamber of Commerce President.
 
He adds that it's also important for existing industries in the city.

"That's one of the things, a lot of industries surprisingly use a lot of water," said Elliff. 

Williams says if the measure is approved by 4/7 vote, the Carthage Water and Electric Plant is eligible for a 50% grant through the Spring River Watershed Initiative.

"What the voters are going to allow us to do, is to use the lowest cost financing possible and to potentially acquire a three million dollar grant to pay for half of it," said Williams. 

The general manager says the Carthage Water and Electric Plant has a current bond in place that will be paid off in 2016. If this bond is approved, there will be no increase in the amount of debt service they are paying. If the wastewater bond issue isn't approved in August, he estimates customers wastewater rates could go up 20% to 25%.

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