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Riceboro seeks funds to expand water, sewer
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More Riceboro residents may be able to get rid of their septic systems if the city can secure some federal funding.  
The city is eyeing $400,000 to $500,000 of stimulus money to make it happen.
There is $10.8 million up for grabs under this year’s American Recovery and Reinvestment Act for non-entitlement cities that apply by June 1.
Under a $500,000 block grant from last year, the city started installing a pump station and sewer lines along Barrington Ferry, set to serve 26 to 28 homes.
“It’s just continuation of that effort,” said Mayor Bill Austin. “It’s always been on the agenda, on this administration and the previous administration, to provide public sewer for all the city’s residences.”
P.C. Simonton & Associates is coordinating the project with work set to begin within the next month and last eight to 12 months, according to Austin.
The project hoping to be funded by the stimulus would help 24 homes.
Phase one of the project, completed in 2005, included a sewer plant along Barrington Ferry.
The plant serves SNF/Chemtall and about 90 homes.
Current work continues along Highway 17 on Retreat and H.R. Williams roads, then that would finish phase two of the sewer project.
To meet “shovel-ready,” criteria, Austin said the project needs gravity lines added.
The mayor said he did not want to estimate the project’s cost since it will eventually go out for bids.
“We’re continuing also to pursue (U.S. Department of Agriculture) grant funds to complete sewer in other areas in the city,” Austin said.
Riceboro recently asked and received a letter of support from the board of commissioners.
“That portion of Shell Road is in the unincorporated area but in the service delivery area,” Austin said. “Anytime we run water and sewer in an unincorporated area we have to get permission with the county.”
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