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Monroe City voters to decide how new wastewater plant is funded

Monroe City, Missouri, voters will decide the future of the sewage system.

The city has proposed a ballot issue to fund a new $10 million wastewater plant through bonds.

Officials said rain can cause problems at the wastewater plant in Monroe City.

“When we have bad rains, this whole station has a problem staying up with all of our issues we’ve got. All the electronics inside are dated,” said Mayor John Long.

The system’s age is another issue. The plant has been used for almost 5 decades.

“The plant was designed for a 30 year at life, we’re way past thirty years,” said Long.

Now, the city faces another challenge, federal and state regulations. In order to stay in compliance with those, Mayor Long said upgrades are needed.

“There are new standards coming out and the DNR is telling us they’re going to get more strict as the years go. We know that this plant is not going to be able to sustain what is going to happen in the coming years,” said Long.

This is why voters will decide next month whether the city can sell bonds to raise money for a brand new wastewater plant.

If the issue passes, the mayor said rates will still go up, but if the issue fails, he said rates will have to go even higher.

“We know that those rates are going to go way up compared to what this bond would bring in. We feel like if this was not the way to do this, this isn’t the way that we would do it,” said Long.

Voters will go to the polls on November 5th.

Officials said if the city does not comply with the new regulations, it could face fines up to $10,000 a day for each day that their system is not in compliance.

Officials said if the issue passes, they will be able to acquire a grant for 45% of the estimated $10 million along with a low-interest loan.

The city is set to host two informational meetings about this ballot issue. The first one is this Thursday at the senior nutrition center in Monroe City at 6 p.m.

 

Brett Knese

Multi-Media Journalist at WGEM News.

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