Lewis & Clark Water System Would Get Nearly $19 Million In Appropriations Bill

Tea, SD — The Lewis & Clark water system has received some news about funding from the federal government.

Lewis & Clark’s Executive Director Troy Larson tells us the FY24 Energy & Water Appropriations Bill that received final congressional approval by the Senate on March 8 includes $18.825 million for the Lewis & Clark Regional Water System. This total includes the $6.825 million proposed by the Administration in its FY24 Budget, as well as a $12 million congressionally directed spending request made by Senators John Thune, Amy Klobuchar, Mike Rounds and Tina Smith.

Larson says the vast majority of the funds would be used toward the construction of Phase 3 of Lewis & Clark’s water treatment plant near Vermillion, SD. This project will allow the plant to produce the combined reserved capacities of 44.19 million gallons a day of its 20 member cities and rural water systems in southeast South Dakota, northwest Iowa and southwest Minnesota. Bids will be opened on March 21 for Phase 3.

Larson says, “A big thank you to Senators Thune, Klobuchar, Rounds, and Smith for putting their names on the dotted line to make this spending request. They went above and beyond. Thanks as well to the six other members of our tristate congressional delegation for working to increase funding for the Bureau of Reclamation’s Rural Water Program, which was higher in FY24 than in FY23. Lastly, thanks to the Administration and our partners at the Bureau of Reclamation for their continued support. This does not get us to the finish line, but we can certainly see the light at the end of the tunnel.”

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