DNR denies $29,500 grant for Seligman water study

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

State revolving fund low, city looking to reapply for grant next year

The Missouri Department of Natural Resources denied Seligman's $29,500 grant application toward a citywide water system analysis by Olsson Associates.

"[DNR] just said there were insufficient funds in the state revolving fund," said Brian Nichols, Seligman city clerk. "So, it just ran out of money. I'm sure we weren't high on the list."

Olsson will look at the grant application and have its state lobbyist be in direct communication with DNR, Nichols said. If DNR still does not release anymore funds, then the city will reapply for the grant next year because it does not want the analysis to be an out-of-pocket expense.

The Seligman grant was the only one out of about six grants connected with projects through Olsson's Joplin office that DNR did not approve, said Jack Schaller, Joplin office leader at Olsson. The engineering and design firm will help Seligman as much as it can, but the city submitted the application.

"Sometimes, there are additional funds left over, and maybe some cities can't do it right now, so they turn down the grant, and the money goes back into the pool," he said. "We want to put ourselves in the best position to be able to be there if there is any money left."

Seligman applied for the grant in September 2014. If the city can get the funds, the analysis will start in fall 2015.

The previous analysis was completed on May 15, 2007, for $11,500. The analysis takes three to six months, depending on the weather, when the workers can get out and exactly how much water line is in the ground to survey.

The water study will basically take a look at the entire network from the well and the tower to the distribution system, Schaller said. The study accounts for inadequacies, issues, undersized lines, lack of fire hydrants, lack of pressure, lack of volume in certain areas and ways to improve the fire service rating and to provide adequate supply and demand.

Olsson works with a WaterCAD map, which is a water distribution model, to allow for the firm to make tweaks to the system as needed, he said.

"If we do this, what happens?" Schaller said. "If we change this, what happens?"

Seligman provides known data about the water system, so Olsson can enter it into WaterCAD, he said.

"We try and fill in all the missing pieces, get the model and figure out what we need to do to get it up to the best standard that we can," Schaller said.

The firm's Springfield office would also assist with the project.

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