Cut Bank Mayor Dan Raemaeker has good news to share with local residents regarding the financing of two of the City’s upcoming infrastructure projects.
“The City of Cut Bank received a Delivering Local Assistance Grant for $352,400 from the State of Montana for the rehabilitation of the failing lift station,” reported Raemaeker. “The total cost of the project is estimated at $452,400,” he informed, adding, “the extra $100,000 will be paid out of the City’s reserves.”
Raemaeker continued, “This means there will not be a rate increase as a result of fixing the lift station located behind the City Pool.”
Raemaeker also received word the City was awarded the $500,000 loan forgiveness for the Phase 4 water project. “With this news and the Council’s recent decision to replace the above-ground tank with a new concrete tank, City officials are now working with their engineering firm to determine what the actual rate increase will look like on the water side,” said Raemaeker.
“Once the Phase 4 project is complete, the City of Cut Bank will be doing really well on the water distribution side. We will have taken care of all the major current issues we are facing with old rotting four-inch water mains,” he explained. “We are estimating that we will be able to take at least a four to five year break on water line replacements after Phase 4.”
City Superintendent Jim Suta reminds residents that communities throughout Montana–not just Cut Bank–are facing water and sewer rate increases due to infrastructure improvements.
Kalispell, for example, is proposing to increase resident’s water bills by 55.6% and sewer bills by 103.8% over the next seven years, according to an article in the Flathead Beacon provided by Suta. According to the article, Kalispell’s water rates last increased in 2013 and the last sewer rate increase was in 2014.