Montana Governor Steve Bullock announced a $9 million loan to the City of Laurel to finance
a project to upgrade its wastewater treatment plant. The new facility will utilize a process called Biological Nutrient Removal, a technology that removes high concentrations of nitrogen and phosphorus from wastewater.
"This loan will create good-paying jobs and will modernize critical infrastructure at the lowest possible cost, "Governor Bullock said. "And along with equipping Laurel with the capacity to handle further growth and development, the investment will provide additional protection for the Yellowstone River."
Construction of the new plant being completed by Billings-based Williams Brothers Construction began last week, and is scheduled for completion in January of 2015. The 20-year loan will draw a low interest rate of 3 percent. The City will also refinance five existing loans with the state, saving Laurel residents $492,000.
"The water is actually going to be cleaner going back into the river than it was when we first took it out," Kurk Markegard, Director of Public Works for the City of Laurel, said. "The City can now meet higher water quality standards, and will increase capacity from about 800,000 gallons of wastewater per day to two million gallons per day."
Communities across Montana are currently taking advantage of the state's reduced borrowing costs and restructuring their SRF loans to save even more. As of August 1, 2013, a total of 39 cities and towns have saved more than $35 million through the program.
The SRF loan program is administered by DNRC and the Montana Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ). These loans are meant to enable Montana communities to upgrade or expand critical drinking or wastewater treatment facilities at the lowest possible cost. More information on SRF program is available at the Montana DNRC website: http://dnrc.mt.gov/.