Lamar: Council Approves Water Infrastructure Improvements

The May Ranch near Lamar, Colo., has never been plowed. Photo/Ducks Unlimited via The Mountain Town News

From The Provers Journal (Russ Baldwin):

The Lamar City Council took steps to help improve a problem with groundwater infiltration in the area of Rancher’s Lift Station behind Rancher’s Supply on East Olive Street in Lamar. Groundwater (inflow and infiltration) is entering the sewer system negatively impacting the city’s Wastewater Treatment Plant. The excess groundwater affects electricity costs, unnecessary equipment wear and tear on lift station pumps and the Wastewater Treatment Plant and influences the amount of wastewater permitted by the State of Colorado. The current permit allows for 1.16 million gallons per day, but in the summer when ground infiltration increases, the Plant consistently exceeds that number by at least 50to 60%. The lift station at Rancher’s Supply is a major contributor to the problem and if not corrected, state compliance and future growth will become major issues.

The council approved the hiring of Granite Inliner to line the sewer with an inner pipe in the impacted area at a cost of $65,160. The firm has been employed by the city to line parts of the stormwater drainage system in the Northwest Stormwater Drainage Project with more than satisfactory results. It was noted that there was only $47,000 remaining in the fund, but the balance should be made up from the 2020 budget, perhaps using a grant from the Colorado Department of Health and Environment expected later this year.

A public hearing was held to begin the process of updating the city’s Water Conservation Plan through a Colorado Water Conservation Board grant. The council voted to adopt the plan which dictates that communities in the state develop and implement a water conservation plan and revise it as conditions alter for a community. The CWCB has the authority to without grants for any community which have not adopted the required plan. A new, draft plan was completed by the city using a grant for the engineering study in 2015. However, the city’s Water Enterprise management team was not satisfied with the quality of the plan and the engineer is no longer available. City staff eventually hired the water engineering firm, Helton & Williamsen to produce a supplement to the Plan which corrected the areas of concern to city staff. The Plan was approved by the council during its regular meeting on Monday, October 28th.

The proclamation No. 19-07, “November 8, 2019 as Zonta International Centennial Day in the City of Lamar, Colorado” was approved by the council. The Prowers County chapter joined other chapters around the world to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the founding of Zonta. Local activities included displays by members in numerous parades, gathering books about strong females to donate to local school libraries and a pubic proclamation with week of November 8th will culminate in the lighting of the Prowers County Courthouse in anniversary teal colors. Zonta was founded on November 9, 1919 in Buffalo, NY and has since expanded into an international service and advocacy organization with 29,000 members in 63 countries on six continents. Since 1923 Zonta has contributed more than $41 million U.S. dollars to empower women through improved education, health care, economic opportunities and safe living conditions…

…[increases in] water usage rates which are recommended to go up by $1.00 each for in-city water connections and $2.00 per service for those residents who are outside the city boundaries.

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