Your Sewer Dollars at Work

The District recently purchased a new pivot for the treatment site.  The treatment facility, located approximately one mile north of Highway 82 and one mile east of Highway 93, consists of two 2.5-acre aerated treatment lagoons and two larger storage ponds for winter storage of treated effluent.  Disposal of the effluent is accomplished through a slow rate land application (irrigation) system on a 160-acre field located northwest of the lagoons and farmed by a local farmer.  We currently irrigate around 65 million gallons of effluent over 135 acres annually.

The existing pivot installed in 1987 was designed to produce 1000 GPM.  As flows have increased over the years, the pivot has become less efficient, producing only about 745 GPM.  Constant issues with the corner arm not shutting off properly, the pivot getting stuck in the wheel tracks, the inability to control the pivot, etc. have proved to be a major challenge just trying to keep it running through the season.  Over $12,000 in labor and parts was expended in 2014 just to troubleshoot and repair the pivot.

The new Reinke pivot will generate the 1000 GPM needed to spread the effluent evenly over the field and comes with full control that can be managed from staff phones or computers.  It has tires more suitable for our soil type and saturation level.  The pivot also has an end gun so the whole field (160 acres) can be sprayed, resulting in more effluent being disposed of and the farmer realizing a bigger harvest.  Purchased from Treasure State Irrigation in Kalispell, support is provided locally.

Through sound financial planning, LCWSD depreciated the old pivot over time and planned for a future replacement.  The District was able to make this $125,000 purchase using reserved funds generated from the monthly customer utility payments.  The old pivot will be sold and the proceeds used for future projects. This is just one example of how your payments are used not only to provide water/sewer service to your home and/or business, but to ensure the system is maintained to meet the ever increasing needs of our community.