USDA Representative Dan Niemeyer addresses the Board of Alderman concerning the City’s sewer project.

The Board of Alderman received homework during the City Council meeting on February 6. During open forum representatives from the United States Department of Agricultural (USDA) presented a letter of conditions to the board concerning the sewer project.

Representative Dan Niemeyer, addressed the board with the highlights of the letter. The preliminary total of the sewer project will be $9,325,000 with more than 5 million being a loan and approximately 4 million being a grant. Niemeyer stated, “This is an important process to understand.” The City is responsible for paying the first $26,000, with evidence to the USDA with the payment before proceeding with the loan and grant money. The loan will be provided by revenue bonds.

Next, Niemeyer discussed requirements needed from the City before moving forward. There has to be a mandatory hook-up to for each household. The USDA requires the City use American Iron and Steel for the project. The property rights with easements will need to be obtained. The City will hire a resident to oversee all operations. They will need to come up with a reserve account for repairs and extension funding. The City will be required to provide the USDA with annual reports.

Niemeyer stated, “Then at some point we will ask you to graduate from our program and obtain a commercial line of credit when the City is more financially stable.”

Niemeyer explained to the board the homework needed currently to move forward with the USDA on the sewer project. He shared, “We need the authorizations for the preliminary engineer and attorney prepared easements, service area and user maps, a document stating the City has paid the first $26,000 with the bill and receipt. We will need the operating budget, along with a copy of updated sewer rules and regulations and certificates of the City environmental safety plan.”

Niemeyer explained to the board this project took National Office approval due to the significant amount of the grant funds needed from the State of Missouri.