OKLAHOMA CITY – The Guthrie Public Works Authority (Authority) received approval for a $4,100,000 loan Tuesday from the Oklahoma Water Resources Board (OWRB) to improve the Authority’s wastewater infrastructure. Construction of upgrades and improvements to the wastewater system will be financed by the Oklahoma Clean Water State Revolving Fund (CWSRF).
In December of 2020, the Board approved $16,000,000 in loan funds for the Authority to construct a new energy efficient sequential batch reactor wastewater treatment plant, a lift station, retro fit of a flow equalization basin, sludge management facilities, an ultra violet disinfection system, and a lab building. Related article: GPWA receives $16M for wastewater treatment plant
The Authority intended to utilize around $4,000,000 of local funds to go along with the original funding for the project. Subsequent to this, a determination was made to utilize the local funds for other projects and the Authority requested to borrow these funds for the wastewater project. These improvements will enable the Authority to treat the wastewater more effectively prior to discharging it into the Cimarron River.
The current facility opened in 1955, and sits near the Cottonwood Creek on Beemer Road. It was updated in 1982 and 2001, but it has reached the end of its design life, and the permit for the facility expires in 2025.
The new facility, with an estimated start of construction began last February, would be constructed near the Cimarron River and Cooksey Road.
With 18 to 24 months to construct, the target completion date is set for January 2023 and operational in February 2023..
Joe Freeman, chief of the OWRB’s Financial Assistance Division, calculated that the Authority’s customers will save an estimated $250,600 over the life of the 20-year loan compared to traditional financing. The CWSRF loan will be secured with a lien on the revenues of the Authority’s water and sewer systems and a 1 ¾ cent sales tax. Guthrie’s Mayor, Steven Gentling, stated, “The City recognizes the significant economic advantages of the Board’s financing programs and more importantly, the assistance of the Board’s staff in the loan application process. The OWRB is an asset to our State, and we look forward to continuing this partnership as the City looks to further improve the quality and viability of our sewer infrastructure.”
The CWSRF program is administered by the Oklahoma Water Resources Board with partial funding from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The CWSRF program has provided approximately $2.1 billion in water quality loans to provide communities the resources necessary to maintain and improve the infrastructure that protects our valuable water resources statewide.
Since 1983, the Oklahoma Water Resources Board has approved over $5.4 billion in loans and grants for water and wastewater infrastructure improvements throughout Oklahoma.
“We are grateful to State Senator Chuck Hall and Representative Garry Mize, for their support of our financial assistance programs,” said Julie Cunningham, Executive Director of the OWRB.