The last of the necessary surveys has been received to qualify for grant funds.
The Town of Winamac has expressed interest in exploring for additional water resources. Currently, there are two wellheads in the same water source that Winamac pulls from to bring water to local homes. Concerns over safety and contamination, however, have prompted the town to solicit funds to explore for a new source of water.
Kanakee-Iroqouis Regional Planning Commission Executive Director Edwin Buswell says there are a few more steps to go through.
“We will submit an application to the state for a planning grant,” says Buswell. “We will have a public hearing prior to the grant being submitted to have the public submit comments or questions.”
KIRPC is the agency representing the Town to Office of Community and Rural Affairs – which releases the grant funds.
Employees with the Town of Winamac went door-to-door in recent weeks asking residents to fill out the income surveys. In order to qualify for the OCRA grant for water exploration, the Town must show an average income in the low to moderate range.
Buswell says the income data has not been compiled yet, but past experience has told them Winamac will likely qualify.
“[OCRA] take[s] about a month to review it, and it will be awarded at the end of the next month, so probably in June,” says Buswell. “Once it’s awarded, the Town will have a year to the plan, but I don’t foresee it taking that long. They can usually get those done in about six months.”
If a hydro-geology firm is able to find an alternate water source, additional grant funds would be pursued from OCRA.
Buswell says the planning grants are not competitive at this point, meaning if the qualifications are met, there’s a good chance the Town of Winamac would be in receipt of the funds.