Pawhuska Receives $290,050 in Funding from OWRB

Mike Seals - June 17, 2020 9:28 am

Pawhuska Public Works Authority receives $290,050 in funding from OWRB


OKLAHOMA CITY – The Pawhuska Public Works Authority (Authority) received approval Tuesday for $190,050 in loan funding and $100,000 in Emergency Grant funding from the Oklahoma Water Resources Board (OWRB). The $190,050 loan will be financed by a 100% principal forgiveness loan through the Oklahoma Clean Water State Revolving Fund (CWSRF). In additional the principal forgiveness loan, and the $100,000 Emergency Grant, the American Heritage Bank has also extended $188,020 in funds from a line of credit.

The Lake Pawhuska Dam has experienced cracking and sloughing which has resulted in damage to the dam. The Authority will use the funding to stabilize the ground around the dam and to replace intake structure valves that regulate the flow from the dam. These improvements have been approved as a Nonpoint Source (NPS) project through the CWSRF program as it will help to prevent further erosion and potential dam failure while protecting the health of the downstream waterbodies.

Joe Freeman, Chief of the OWRB’s Financial Assistance Division, calculated that the Authority’s customers will save a combined estimation of $404,000 over the life of the OWRB loan and grant compared to traditional financing.

A Pawhuska representative submitted the following statement to the Board, “The City of Pawhuska is thankful for the assistance OWRB has provided to help alleviate the problems associated with the failing dam at Pawhuska Lake.  An inspection of the dam in 2019 indicated several problems which needed to be addressed to maintain the dam and prevent possible dam failure. OWRB met with the City to discuss the problems with the dam and to discuss possible funding options the City was not aware of.  Without the assistance of OWRB and their staff, solving the issues with the dam would have been difficult. An emergency grant and principal forgiveness loan from OWRB will provide the assistance we need to upgrade the dam and make it safer for the public and city personnel who maintain the dam.”

The CWSRF program is administered by the Oklahoma Water Resources Board with partial funding from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).  The CWSRF program has provided approximately $1.7 billion in water quality 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 $4.5 billion in loans and grants for water and wastewater infrastructure improvements throughout Oklahoma.

“We are grateful to State Senator Bill Coleman and State Representatives Sean Roberts and Ken Luttrell for their support of our financial assistance programs,” said Julie Cunningham, Executive Director of the OWRB.


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