by Jonathan Weaver
Ford City Receives $315,000 in State Funding for Flood Mitigation
By Jonathan Weaver
A local municipality received a State grant yesterday to address flooding.
According to State Senator Don White and Representative Jeff Pyle, a $315,000 Flood Mitigation grant from the Commonwealth Financing Authority was awarded to Ford City Borough yesterday.
The money will be used by the borough to complete work at three existing storm water pump stations. The borough plans to upgrade outdated controls, replace worn-out or disabled pumps and renovate structural components of the stations to allow safe access to equipment and secure the stations from vandalism.
Ford City Borough Council Vice-President Tyson Klukan announced the grant at last night’s special meeting.
“On behalf of the Borough, this is fantastic news. This really helps,” Councilman Klukan said. “This is a proactive approach toward our FEMA flood situation. Council has been working very closely with Gibson-Thomas Engineering to tackle the FEMA issue.
“This is only Step One to secure some funding.”
Representative Pyle said the funding will not only add to the quality of life in the community, but also enhance the Borough’s attractiveness for economic development and job creation.
The CFA grant is the latest in a series of state funds awarded to Ford City for infrastructure improvements.
In April 2015, the Pennsylvania Infrastructure Investment Authority (PENNVEST) approved a $3.1 million low-interest loan to the borough for the construction of a new water treatment plant and rehabilitation of a water storage tank that will allow for 720,000 gallons-per-day of treatment.
In 2010, Senator White and Representative Pyle secured a $467,000 Safe Drinking Water Grant for Ford City to move forward in making improvements to the water system.
Ford City also received $662,172 in H2O PA program funding in July 2009 to add wastewater disposal facilities, cover existing sedimentation tanks, recoat the elevated water storage tank, and replace appurtenant equipment to improve an aged and unreliable water system.
“Representative Pyle and I have been strong advocates for the infrastructure needs of Ford City as evidenced by the previous commitments of state funds to move these necessary improvements forward,” Senator White said.
New floodplain maps were issued by the Federal Emergency Management Agency effective February 17.
Engineer Ed Schmitt added his ‘thank you’ to local legislators for their support.
“That’s not easy money to get – there was only $22 million statewide, I believe. I’m real pleased with that,” Schmitt said.
During his regular construction update, Schmitt said contractors are currently painting the tank and steel for the water treatment plant has been delivered. About 24 percent of the construction is complete.
“Overall, contractors are moving,” Schmitt said.
A trio of change orders was approved by Council – with the additional funding being paid through the construction contingency fund.
More than $900,000 has been paid out to date.