Kaw Lake Water Supply Project provided $205 million from the OWRB and DEQ

Mike Seals - December 18, 2020 12:07 am

OKLAHOMA CITY – The Enid Municipal Authority (Authority) received approval Tuesday for $205,000,000 in funding from the Oklahoma Water Resources Board (OWRB), through its contract with the Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ), to improve the Authority’s water infrastructure. Construction of upgrades and improvements to the water system will be financed by the Oklahoma Drinking Water State Revolving Fund (DWSRF).

The Authority will use the funds of this loan in combination with three previously approved OWRB loans to fund the city’s “Kaw Lake Water Supply Project.” This project will provide raw water from Kaw Lake to Enid’s  new 10.5 million gallon a day water treatment plant via a raw water intake structure constructed at Kaw Lake, a booster pump station, and approximately seventy miles of transmission line. This project will provide another source of water for the Authority to improve resiliency during drought and ensure that the surface water is treated to meet federal drinking water standards.

Joe Freeman, chief of the OWRB’s Financial Assistance Division calculated that the Authority’s customers will save an estimated $9,320,000 over the life of the 30-year loan compared to traditional financing.  The DWSRF loan will be secured with a lien on the revenues of the Authority’s water, sewer, and sanitation systems and a two cent sales tax.

Enid’s City Manager, Jerald Gilbert, said, “This was a long term project collaboration of many people. It started in about 2015 with an initial study and is needed for the long term future of our city. We appreciate what OWRB and DEQ has done for Enid and other communities.”

Joe Freeman commented, “This loan approval is historic to OWRB as the broadest scope of project in geographic size and as the single largest loan in history of the Board. The Kaw Lake Water Supply Project has required the cooperation of numerous entities and individuals over several years, but most of all the great staff and leadership of the city of Enid.”

“This truly is a wonderful project for the citizens of Enid and surrounding areas, and Enid has now taken significant steps to make their community more water resilient. This project serves as an example to other states and communities across the country of what agencies can do when they work together. The City of Enid, DEQ and OWRB have demonstrated how we are able to leverage our resources and work together to help achieve Governor Stitt’s goal of making Oklahoma a top ten state,” said Shellie Chard, DEQ Water Quality Division Director.

The DWSRF program is administered by OWRB and DEQ with partial funding from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).  The DWSRF program has provided approximately $1.5 billion in drinking water loans to provide communities the resources necessary to maintain and improve the infrastructure that protects our valuable water resources statewide.

Since 1983, the Oklahoma Water Resources Board has approved over $4.8 billion in loans and grants for water and wastewater infrastructure improvements throughout Oklahoma.

Julie Cunningham, Executive Director of the OWRB, and Scott Thompson, Executive Director of DEQ, express their sincere appreciation to Governor Kevin Stitt, Secretary of Energy and Environment Ken Wagner, and the State legislators from the Enid area metro for their support of the DWSRF program.

For more details on the overall project, visit the City of Enid’s Kaw Lake Water Supply page.

 

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