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Regional Government

Funds needed for regional sewer project

Shelton-Mason County Journal of Shelton, Washington

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Shelton port commissioners heard an updated report this week on the progress of the Shelton Area Regional Water and Sewer Project.

Dennis McDonald, project manager for the City of Shelton, on Tuesday gave a brief overview of the four phases of the regional project.

The first phase, known as the Satellite Water Reclamation Project, will provide sewer and treated water lines to the Washington State Patrol Academy and Washington Corrections Center.

McDonald said construction of the satellite treatment plant near the Mason County Fairgrounds started in July 2008 and is planned to be operational by this coming November. When completed, two to three tanker loads of biosolids will be transported to the Shelton treatment plant per week.

The total cost of that phase of the regional project is $21.4 million, and funding is complete and includes the state patrol and Department of Corrections, Shelton and Mason County.

Funding for the next phase, the Shelton Wastewater Treatment Plant Improvements Project, by contrast is far from complete. The estimated total cost is $38 million, of which $8,722,000 has been secured through a federal loan and grant. Shelton needs $26.3 million in additional funding for construction.

The project includes various upgrades and expansion of the city's 30-year-old treatment plant. The cost of the treatment plant improvements project has skyrocketed from an estimated $15 million in 2005.

McDonald said the cause was rising construction prices and inflation.

Among the projected benefits of the project are reduction of the shellfish closure zone around the plant's outfall and an increase of the plant's capacity from the current 4.02 to 4.4 million gallons per day.

No funds have been acquired yet for a third phase of the regional project, the Johns Prairie Utilities Extension Project, which would provide water and sewer utilities to the area.

McDonald said Shelton is working on an agreement to provide water and sewer service as far out as the Mason Transit Authority's headquarters on Johns Prairie Road, and also is working with the Squaxin Island Tribe on what it can do to move the project forward and how much water could be produced from the aquifer there.

The cost of the Johns Prairie project was estimated at $3.6 million some years ago, an "old" amount according to McDonald.

The fourth phase, the Dayton-Airport Road Water Expansion Project, would provide drinking water to "essential state facilities," such as the corrections center and state patrol academy to support future site expansions.

The estimated cost of the project is $8.3 million. It is currently in the planning stages. The regional partners have applied for state funds and Shelton will continue to seek additional partners, as well as state and federal funding.

Comments about this story may be directed to Jeff Green at: or by calling 426-4412.

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Original Publication Date: February 5, 2009

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