101°F
weather icon Clear

Congress to consider bill that would award city $1 million

Boulder City could be getting some help with renovating its wastewater treatment facility if Congress approves a bill that includes $1 million in funding for the project.

On July 1, the Interior, Environment and Related Agencies funding bill was advanced to the U.S. House of Representatives by the full Appropriations Committee. The bill includes $1 million to upgrade the outdated systems at the Boulder City Wastewater Treatment Plant and to ensure health and safety for the disposal measures.

“The original wastewater treatment plant was built in 1965 with modifications in 1995,” said City Engineer Jim Keane. “The ponds were upgraded in 2006 and the headworks upgraded in 2009.”

At the plant, the water is treated so it can be disposed of safely. Once it has been treated, some of it is sold for dust control to solar fields and the quarry.

“The rest is sent to evaporation ponds,” said Utilities Director Dennis Porter. “We are currently looking at additional ways to safely repurpose the wastewater.”

The equipment at the plant is operating 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

“The 12-year old bar screen and grit removal system is reaching a critical point and needs to be replaced,” said Communications Manager Lisa LaPlante. “Failure of this equipment could create a number of health and safety issues. … If the appropriation is approved, the funds would help cover the costs of equipment and installation.”

The entire project is estimated to cost $1.4 million, according to Public Works Director Keegan Littrell.

“We currently have $400,000 budgeted in the city’s capital improvement plan,” he said.

The bill with this funding is set to go next to the U.S. House of Representatives for approval. Rep. Susie Lee, who represents Boulder City, is a member of the bill’s subcommittee and voted for the bill.

“As a member of the subcommittee with jurisdiction over this interior funding bill, I am proud to have helped secure funds that will address the devastating impacts of climate change Nevadans are witnessing today,” she said in a press release. “This bill includes funds for Nevada conservation efforts, updating wastewater facilities in Boulder City and increasing water resilience research and programs.”

Mayor Kiernan McManus said the city submitted this to Lee’s request for community funding projects.

“The project … is for maintenance work at the wastewater treatment facility,” he said. “The project has been pending for some time and was becoming much more of a priority due to the time that had passed. The work will prevent failure of this critical part of the wastewater system. The project is not designed to improve the quality of treatment of the wastewater.”

If the bill is approved, staff would order the equipment as soon as the city receives the funds.

“We are hopeful that the order, delivery and installation will take about 12 months,” said LaPlante.

McManus said he also hopes that the plant will eventually be able to treat the wastewater more than it is now.

“The city is currently selling treated wastewater for dust control at the solar project currently under construction,” he said. “The water is already treated well enough to allow for this use. I believe we can improve the plant to allow the city to consistently use the water for irrigation purposes in the city rather than drawing additional water from Lake Mead. However, that type of project is not included in the $1 million funding Rep. Lee has secured for Boulder City at this time. This current project will require some funding by the city as well, but will allow us to work on other projects in the coming year.”

These improvements would not impact the city’s water usage.

Contact reporter Celia Shortt Goodyear at cgoodyear@bouldercityreview.com or at 702-586-9401. Follow her on Twitter @csgoodyear.

Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.
THE LATEST
Fire department targets sites to improve response times

Two locations are being targeted for a new Boulder City Fire substation that the City Council approved last month to help the department improve response time to emergencies. The proposed new fire station, labeled Station 122, is looking at sites at Quartzite Road and Nevada Way as well as at 701 Adams Boulevard. The city owns land in both locations.

Ex-manager sues city; claims retaliation

Former City Manager Al Noyola filed a lawsuit against the city Friday, July 29, alleging that his civil rights were violated when he was fired Oct. 13, 2020.

School begins Monday

School is almost back in session for the quartet of schools in Boulder City.

Storms cause minor damage

Monsoon season brought damage to Boulder City as the town was hit with a collection of storms last week. Luckily, the city was able to handle the storms in an efficient manner, according to officials, who dealt with the typical gravel and rock erosion, power outages and roof leaks.

Lend A Hand awarded $101K from state

In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, the state of Nevada has awarded $30 million in Community Recovery Grants to nonprofit organizations including Lend A Hand of Boulder City. The local organization was one of the 30-plus applicants that received money funded by American Rescue Act Plan dollars.

Drought drives tough talks to cut water use

Nevada and two of its neighboring Southwestern states are still working on ways to drastically cut water use from the Colorado River as a deadline set by the federal government to address the worsening conditions along the river quickly approaches.

House passes bill with help for Lake Mead

WASHINGTON — Sweeping legislation to provide $500 million to raise plunging water levels in Lake Mead and Lake Powell passed Friday, July 29, in the House despite Republican opposition over concerns for farmers and ranchers.

Kayaker drowns at Lake Mead

A 31-year-old man drowned at Lake Mead National Recreation Area near SCUBA Beach on Wednesday evening after he went into the water to retrieve a loose inflatable kayak, according to the National Park Service.

More remains found at Lake Mead

As water levels continue to decrease, another body has been discovered at Lake Mead. National Park Service rangers responded to a witness report of human remains spotted at Swim Beach in the Boulder Basin area of the lake at 4:30 p.m. Monday, July 25.

Water district targets pool sizes to aid conservation

As water managers grapple with shortages across the Southwest, pool sizes in the Las Vegas Valley are the next target slated for cuts.