Jul 24, 2020

2020 MWEA/AWWA Joint Annual Meeting Cancelled

Unfortunately, due to the increasing COVID-19 infection rate, employer travel restriction, and presenters’ availability, MO-AWWA and MWEA have been forced to cancel the rescheduled 2020 joint annual conference. Please visit the MO-AWWA's or MWEA's website for additional detail and FAQs regarding the cancellation of the conference and opportunities for continuing education credits. If you would like additional information, including general information on coronavirus or information specifically tailored to the water and wastewater industry, please visit this link.

Elke Boyd to Present on Water Upgrades at the 2020 MWEA/AWWA Joint Annual Meeting

Elke B. Boyd, P.E., BCEE, Senior Civil Engineer with GREDELL Engineering Resources, Inc., will be presenting “City of Lanagan - Water Upgrades” at this year’s Joint Annual Meeting of the Missouri Section of the American Water Works Association (AWWA) and Missouri Water Environment Association (MWEA). This year’s annual meeting will take place from March 29 to April 1, 2020. The event will be held at its usual location at Tan-Tar-A/Margaritaville Lake Resort in Osage Beach, Missouri. This conference provides an excellent one-shop stop for all your training needs in the water, wastewater, stormwater and system management fields. Follow the link for full conference information. https://www.awwa-mo.org/events-training/joint-conference.html. Elke’s session will take place from 2:10 pm to 3:00 pm on Tuesday, March 31. Those interested in learning more about rehabilitation of a drinking water system are invited to attend.

Naturally occurring radionuclides are a concern for a number of Missouri’s deep-well public water supplies. The City of Lanagan raw well water supply has a history of exceeding the drinking water Maximum Contaminant Levels (MCLs) for radionuclides dating back to its drilling in 1984. GREDELL Engineering has been working with the City since 2013 to help Lanagan achieve compliance with the MCL requirements of the Missouri Department of Natural Resources (MDNR) and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Recent Enforcement actions included an Administrative Order (AO) issued by EPA on August 31, 2018. The AO included a requirement to submit an engineering report in the spring of 2019. Other recent Enforcement action included an Order of Preliminary Mandatory Injunction on Consent, issued on December 4, 2018 in the Circuit Court of McDonald County. This order included, among other items, the requirements to submit an engineering report and a Drinking Water SRF application to the Missouri Department of Natural Resources as first steps towards adding a treatment system to reduce radionuclides to below regulatory levels.

One of the most challenging issues in finding a feasible drinking water treatment system was the fact that the City of Lanagan does not have a central wastewater facility to treat any waste stream from the water treatment plant. Other water system features of concern included outdated water meters, the ground storage tank was nearing failure, there was no backup water supply, hydrant coverage was inadequate, most distribution valves were not operable, the distribution system contained long dead-end mains, and the hydrants had not been connected to the mains with the proper materials, causing waterloss sometimes exceeding 70%. Gredell Engineering completed a USDA Rural Development SEARCH grant-funded engineering report June of 2019. Due to funding constraints, the report recommended splitting the improvements into two phases.

The report established the City’s eligibility for a $300,000 Drinking Water State Revolving Fund (DWSRF) grant paired with a $100,000 MDNR Small Borrower Loan and $500,000 grant from the DED Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program. Without additional bonding capacity, this extensive funding package was projected to fall short of initial upgrade project estimates by about $900,000. Late in 2019, the City became eligible for funding under the new EPA Water Infrastructure Improvements for the Nation (WIIN) Act, which provides Assistance for Small and Disadvantaged Communities Drinking Water Grants. Lanagan is now on path to receive a $733,150 WIIN grant, which will be one of the first in the Nation. Paired with CDBG and the Small Borrower Loan, the total package results in funding of $1,333,000. 92.5 % of this is grant funding.

With the new funding package, Phase 1 was adjusted to include treatment for radionuclides (highest priority), rehabilitation and reinstatement of Well #2, replacement of the water tank, replacement of the most critical valves and hydrants, and the removal of all hydrants on small mains. Bid alternates consist of the addition of an emergency backup generator, replacement of the remaining valves, and rehabilitation of the booster pump station. If funding becomes available for Phase 2, it may include rehabilitation of Well #3, replacement of water mains, addition of valves and hydrants, replacement of all water meters, and addition of distribution loops.

The combination of the poor condition of the City’s infrastructure, EPA and MDNR Enforcement action, as well as funding needs, created short deadlines for the funding agencies as well as for the design and construction of the project. This project is scheduled to go to bid in the spring of 2020, about 10 months after submittal of the engineering report.

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