Mar 14, 2007

Washington Governor Announces $71 Million in Infrastructure Upgrades

Governor Chris Gregoire announced that 19 Washington communities have been recommended for state water and sewer loans totaling $71 million. The funds will be loaned to local governments for sanitary sewer, domestic water and storm water improvements.

The loans require Legislative approval and will be awarded next May.

“Investments in Washington communities, such as these by the Public Works Board, enhance our quality of life,” said Governor Gregoire. “These projects protect public and environmental health while laying the foundation for businesses to move or expand here.”

The Public Works Trust Fund is a revolving loan fund that offers low-interest loans to help local governments and special purpose districts finance critical public works projects, such as bridges, roads, solid waste, domestic water, sanitary sewers and storm sewer systems. Funds come from the Public Works Assistance Account, which is administered by the Public Works Board.

“We want to help communities finance necessary infrastructure so they can be successful, sustainable and safe,” said Juli Wilkerson, director of the Washington Department of Community, Trade and Economic Development, which staffs the Public Works Board.

“There is a significant amount of investment that is needed to meet water and sewer needs in our state,” said Dr. Diana Gale, chair of the Public Works Board. “Safe drinking water and sound systems are part of the basic foundation in any community.”

Some of the projects that the board will recommend to the Legislature are as follows:

  • Annapolis Water District - $595,000
    The water district will preserve the structural integrity of the water tank and foundation. This will eliminate breaches in the paint coating systems.
  • City of Blaine - $7,000,000
    The city will construct a new wastewater treatment plant to serve the projected demand for the next 20 years, using the latest membrane filtering technology to produce reuse-quality water and minimize impacts to local shell fishing.
  • City of Bremerton - $675,000
    The city will upgrade a sewage pump station to increase capacity from 1,900 gallons per minute to 3,500 gallons per minute, eliminating sewage overflow into the Puget Sound.