Monson readies for water grant

Posted July 20, 2009, at 8:08 p.m.
Last modified Jan. 30, 2011, at 12:12 p.m.

MONSON, Maine — A special town meeting to accept a $500,000 Community Development Block Grant for an upgrade of the town’s antiquated water system will be held at 6:30 p.m. today.

A public hearing will be held on the matter at 6 p.m. before the town meeting. Both sessions are planned for the municipal building

The grant, resulting from a submission by the Piscataquis County Economic Development office on behalf of the town, will be used to lay new water distribution lines, according to Town Manager Julie Anderson.

“This should pretty much complete [the water system improvements],” Anderson said of the grant. The improvements are needed because of the system’s age, the breakdowns that have ensued, and the lack of water pressure in some locations.

Town officials have been working for years to secure money to improve the system, which serves about 120 customers. Once the latest improvements have been made, the lines will be extended to Hebron Heights, a housing project that will bump up the customer base, according to Anderson.

The town earlier borrowed $148,000 and received a grant for $422,000 to construct a new pump station.

“We’re just about completed on our pump station,” Anderson said.

The latest grant will be applied to an earlier $400,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Rural Development agency, and that money should be enough to complete the distribution project, according to Anderson. The lines in place are more than 70 years old.

The design for the distribution system is being worked on and bids will be solicited soon, Anderson said. “We’ve got to start that this summer,” she said.

The town also earlier had received a $425,000 state and tribal grant to build a 65,000-gallon reservoir on North Guilford Road. The current reservoir holds 31,000 gallons. That project has not begun.

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