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Post Falls funds water reclamation facility study

by ELLI GOLDMAN HILBERT
Staff Writer | February 18, 2022 1:00 AM

POST FALLS — JUB Engineers was awarded a contract for $367,700 to work on the city of Post Falls Water Reclamation Facility Plan.

Utilities Manager Craig Borrenpohl presented the project at the City Council meeting Tuesday night.

“We’re needing to re-up on our facility plan,” said Borrenpohl. “The terminology I like to use is facilities planning study, because we’re really looking at the infrastructure.”

A facility plan was completed in 2000, and again in 2008, Borrenpohl said. The water reclamation facility was built in 1984 and began operating in 1985. It cost about $5.7 million to build and about 90% of the cost was paid for by grants.

Prior to that, Post Falls was the largest community without sewers in Idaho, and all houses in the area were on septic systems, Borrenpohl said.

The study will look at new treatment technology and anticipated production and examine alternative options for discharge. Existing facility infrastructure that isn’t being used will be considered for other uses, Borrenpohl said.

The 2020 water reclamation plan had estimated that by 2022, the processing of liquid waste would be at the rate of about 5 million gallons per day.

“We’re a little bit under that,” Borrenpohl said.

Included in the study is a thorough financial analysis, Borrenpohl said.

“The existing rates that we have were set in 2013,” Borrenpohl said. “We owe it to our ratepayers to make sure that we are hitting that sweet spot of having financial resources to replace equipment when it breaks down but not overstressing them in their utility payments.”

The study will proceed throughout 2022, with expected completion by March 2023.

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