Hannibal's waste water plant needs help

Hannibal Board of Public Works is looking for millions of dollars in work to extend the troubled sewer plant's life.

The board has learned that it will cost an estimated $4.7 million dollars to bring the plant up to current environmental codes.

The plant, located on Warren Barrett Drive on Hannibal's southeast side, was originally built in 1980 and hasn't seen significant upgrades since then. Public Works officials have seen dramatic increases in equipment failures and maintenance costs in the past several years.

Bob Stevenson, general manager of Public Works, said the plant treats about six million gallons of sewage everyday.

"So the sewer system has to stand on its own financially," he said. "And right now we're up against some pretty big expenses for awhile. We're doing everything we can to keep those costs as low as possible, but some of it is going to be unavoidable."

He also said that when the plant was built back in 1980, the cost of the project was about a 90/10 spilt between the federal government and the BPW. Now the cost of any project at the facility would be funded locally with little hope of federal funding.

The repairs are needed to keep the waste-water treatment plant working through the next decade or until the utility can expand the curernt facility.

Stevenson said with the equipment they have and the actual working of the sewer plant, a brand new facility probably wouldn't be at the top of the priority list.

Read more in the Hannibal Courier Post.