Pulaski County Community Development Commission Executive Director Nathan Origer and Monterey Town Council President Jim Fleury appeared before the Pulaski County Council Monday night. They requested an additional $15,000 to their original loan request of $20,000. When the town began assembling information for a 2013 grant to help with the cost of wastewater treatment plant improvements, the engineers used numbers relevant to 2013. Origer says the estimates have gone up since then.
“Their experience with construction projects similar to this since then has suggested that the numbers that they arrived at in 2013 are insufficient at whatever inflation they have seen in construction costs for wastewater projects. It started at $202,500, and it is now estimated at $275,000,” said Origer.
The match for the grant is at 20 percent which means the town now needs to come up with approximately $55,000. The town has $20,000 in its budget for the match. The council is now asking for a loan from the County of $35,000.
Origer explains that the town council will need to review their budget during their meeting tonight at 7 p.m. ET at the Monterey Town Hall to see if they can afford the loan repayment. The council members may review the scope of their project to fit a loan repayment schedule.
Fleury says the upgrades to the wastewater treatment facility are necessary.
“The facility is 15 years old,” explained Fleury. “We have made some repairs along the way, but it’s getting to the point where some of the technology we have is outdated. Some of the technology we want will help reduce our operating costs and keep us, quite honestly, easier to maintain without violations to the state.”
Fleury notes that the town had fines in the past that cost the town $2,500. Changes were made, and the town has not had any additional fines.
The county council unanimously approved the advertisement for the additional $15,000 loan to the Town of Monterey. The council previously advertised for the $20,000 loan, and that was unanimously approved Monday night.