Above and beyond. The MPCA recognizes Central Iron Range Sanitary Sewer District (Chisholm, Minn.) for long-term wastewater treatment improvements.
When a person moves to a new town, how often do they think, “the streets and sidewalks look nice, but I wonder what condition the wastewater treatment system is in?” Probably not very often — wastewater collection and treatment systems are mostly out of sight, out of mind. But these systems are essential to improving the environment and enhancing human health.
Knowing this, the Central Iron Range Sanitary Sewer District (CIRSSD) has gone above and beyond to improve long-term water quality through strategic planning and investing in wastewater infrastructure.
Nearly 75% of the municipal and industrial wastewater generated in Minnesota is discharged to a municipally owned sanitary sewer collection system, treated, and then released into the environment. This is why it’s important for citizens and communities to invest in and maintain wastewater infrastructure to help make sure Minnesota’s waterways can support aquatic life, healthy communities and a strong economy. The CIRSSD, serving the communities of Chisholm, Buhl, Kinney and Great Scott, has taken this to heart.
The CIRSSD has enabled these communities to join together to strategically invest in a collaborative, regional wastewater infrastructure. It’s taken several years of planning and gathering funding from a variety of sources, but the CIRSSD now is one regionalized wastewater treatment facility that has been operating since 2014. Major funding sources include the 2005 Minnesota Bonding Bill, Minnesota Public Facilities Authority, and Iron Range Resources and Rehabilitation Board. A new phase in the project that will enhance the system is expected to be complete in early 2017.
Evaluating and investigating existing funding sources to create the regional facility has allowed these communities to afford the high costs of constructing, operating, and maintaining a new wastewater treatment facility that meets environmental standards. Minnesota communities looking for options to help finance similar projects can find a wealth of information on MPCA’s Wastewater and stormwater financial assistance webpage.
For helping communities join together to create solutions that benefits their economies and the environment, the MPCA thanks the CIRSSD for long-term wastewater treatment improvements.