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Town of Peterborough New Hampshire Breaks Ground for Wastewater Improvements Funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act

By Lori Duff, USDA Public Affairs Specialist New Hampshire

The town of Peterborough, New Hampshire has been working diligently to upgrade its wastewater treatment facility for the town’s 6,222 residents since 2000 – when they learned that Environmental Protection Agency requirements for treatment plants were changing. By 2006 the need was critical.

“How do you go to the taxpayers and ask for $12.6 million dollars?” said Barbara Miller, Peterborough Selectperson.

Earlier this week, their efforts came to a symbolic conclusion as Rhonda Shippee, Community Programs Director for USDA Rural Development, was joined by representatives from the offices of  U.S. Senators Gregg and Shaheen, Congressman Hodes and other state and local officials for a groundbreaking ceremony to inaugurate the town’s new wastewater improvement project.

The project was funded in January 2010 by an American Recovery and Reinvestment Act grant of $5,688,000 and loan of $6,986,000 through the USDA Rural Development Water and Environmental Program.  Project improvements will include construction of a new activated sludge facility and upgrades to the pump station, administration facilities and discharge piping.

The MacMillin Company was awarded a contract for the project and plans to hire between 50-80 people for the construction.

“Thanks to cooperation among USDA Rural Development, the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services and the US Environmental Protection Agency, we were able to get the financing package we needed to move forward on this project. Without any one of these agencies, we would not be here today,” said Miller.

Water conservation and energy features have been incorporated into the upgrade, which will provide for the town’s wastewater collection and treatment and also protect and ensure the water quality of the adjacent Contoocook River for the future.

“The Town of Peterborough leaders have worked diligently to bring these critical wastewater system improvements to their community,” said Molly Lambert, State Director for USDA Rural Development VT/NH.  “Their commitment to creating a plan and taking the action that will allow for future growth and success of their community serves as an excellent example of the Recovery Act in action and Rural Development is pleased to be a part of it.”

USDA Community Programs Director Rhonda Shippee, third from left, representatives from the offices of U.S. Senators Gregg and Shaheen, Congressman Hodes, state and local officials, and contractors from the MacMillin Company gather for a groundbreaking at the Peterborough, NH wastewater treatment plant.

USDA Community Programs Director Rhonda Shippee, third from left, representatives from the offices of U.S. Senators Gregg and Shaheen, Congressman Hodes, state and local officials, and contractors from the MacMillin Company gather for a groundbreaking at the Peterborough, NH wastewater treatment plant.

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