Farmington gets $500,000 grant to help improve the city’s sewer system

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FARMINGTON, Ill. — Out with the old and in with the new will soon apply to the sewer system on the west side of Farmington.

The Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Development awarded the city a $500,000 Community Development Block Grant on Friday.

Rollen Wright, city administrator, said the grant will be useful to give the city some much-needed enhancements.

“This portion of town that we’re looking at is part of the older system and it’s time to upgrade,” Wright said.

The federally funded grant program is designed to support community development activities such as affordable housing, anti-poverty programs, and infrastructure development.

Wright said the grant will be used to cover installation costs to put in new sewer liners for clay pipes that are about 100 years old. He said if pipes these old fail, they could be problematic for those who use them.

“They can’t flush a stool, they can’t take a bath until you get it dug out and later repaired,” right said.

An old sewer system is the exact reason why Nathan Fleming, a resident on the city’s west side, had to have his yard dugout and later repaired.

“Unfortunately, I had a blockage in my sewer system where it connects to the main,” Fleming said. “The pipe that goes into it had shifted over time and I only had about an inch or two inches of flow that was going in.”

He said people that problem extended to the street he didn’t have to pay for the repairs, but nevertheless he’s happy the city now had this grant and is taking the initiative to modernize its sewers.

“Anything that makes it better, it improves it,” Fleming said.

Wright said the city hopes to have the sewer system updated by late summer of this year.

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