Newsletter: Community Projects Have Never Been More Affordable

Michigan communities aren’t waiting to find financing for future projects, even with the national and state economies on hold due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Village of Roscommon recently secured financing through the United States Department of Agriculture Rural Development (USDA-RD) program. It received $11 million in grants and low-interest loans to improve their water and sewer systems.

“Getting a grant for an $11 million infrastructure improvement project is almost unprecedented and it’s huge for a small village like us,” said Lance Cherven, director of the Village’s Department of Public Works. “It allows us to do a lot of updates on the water system and a bunch of sewer lining and repairs. These things were in our capital improvement plans, but they were just a dream a couple of years ago.”

USDA-RD funds will help Roscommon replace or repair 2.3 miles of sanitary sewer, several manholes and service connections, televise the collection system, upgrade and repair lift stations and install a SCADA system. It will also give the village a new aeration system and screening at the wastewater treatment facility.

More than a mile of aging undersized watermain will also be replaced in the water project along with motor and pump replacements at two wells, replacement of a third well, and installation of new telemetry, and remote read water meters.

“Our engineering firm (F&V) was proactive in reaching out to the USDA and finding out what needed to be done to meet the grant criteria and that was really helpful,” said Cherven, after the village’s first application to USDA-RD was a successful one.

Read the full newsletter.