KIRPC to Manage Star City Sewer Project Grant

Pulaski County Commissioners Tracey Shorter, Kenneth Boswell, Michael Tiede

A grant in the amount of $587,253 is to be received by Pulaski County to assist in funding the construction of the Star City sewer project, a new sanitary sewer system for the unincorporated community. This project, which is funded by the federal Community Development Block Grant (CDBG), is to come from CDBG funds that were made available for economic recovery after many areas were damaged by natural disasters in 2008.

“We have made it a priority to leverage all of the resources we can to spur economic growth in rural Indiana communities,” said Lt. Governor Becky Skillman. “The new sewer system serving the Star City area will make the community a more desirable place to live, work and do business.”

The Kankakee-Iroquois Regional Planning Commission (KIRPC) has submitted proposals for grant administration of the project. They are the only firm that has submitted proposals, despite an ad being run in the newspaper for grant administration services on behalf of the county. Because all or parts of the administration fees are to be paid using federal dollars, KIRPC must go through the formal process of procurement, including an interview before the county commissioners. Kimberly Baker of KIRPC attended the Pulaski County Commissioners Meeting to represent her firm. The commissioners approved KIRPC as the grant writer for the Star City sewer project.

An engineer is currently working on plans for the sewer project. Once these plans have been completed, Baker will work closely with the engineer, and will also be placing ads in the newspaper to obtain bids for the construction of the project.

“One thing I’ve learned is to trust KIRPC,” said Pulaski County Commissioner Mike Teide. “I’ve never had a problem with KIRPC.”

Included in the project is the installation of 16,695 linear feet of piping, the establishment of a lift station to pump sewage to the wastewater treatment plant in Winamac, as well as other required components. This new system is expected to serve over 400 people and will be operated by the Star City Regional Sewer District. Because this project will rectify problems that occur due to improperly treated raw sewage, it will relieve health and environmental issues associated with such.

Because the project plans must be completed before construction can begin, and the Indiana Office of Community and Rural Affairs must also approve the release of funds for the project to begin, construction is not expected to begin until summer of 2011. However, on the plus side, OCRA has very strict time frames and the whole project must be completed by Jan. 15, 2013.