Milner could see sewage plant upgrade

Routt County commissioners seek improvements

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— The Routt County Board of Commissioners agreed Monday to seek a $45,000 loan from the Colorado Department of Local Affairs to make mandated improvements to Milner’s wastewater treatment facilities.

The overall cost of the project is $150,000. The balance of $105,000 would be covered by an energy impact grant from DOLA.

The $45,000 would be repaid by subscribers living in Milner and would enable the construction of a 1,000-foot extension of an outlet pipe to get the effluent beyond a dry channel of the Yampa River and into the main channel, Routt County Environmental Health Director Mike Zopf said.

The Yampa’s flow is sufficient to dilute the ammonia component of the effluent to harmless levels.

The construction project, which has been engineered but not finalized, could not happen before next year, Zopf said.

New federal Environmental Protection Agency regulations governing the discharge of ammonia from waste treatment plants are causing small facilities across the county to upgrade, County Commissioner Doug Monger said.

Milner is an unincorporated community, and its sewage treatment lagoon, serving 95 taps, is operated as an enterprise fund under Routt County ownership but held separately from the county’s general fund.

The county-owned treatment lagoon in Milner, and a recently upgraded version in Phippsburg, date to the late 1970s and early 1980s when a previous board of commissioners thought it was important to take responsibility for proper treatment of waste in the two unincorporated communities, County Commission Chairwoman Nan­cy Stahoviak said.

Zopf said the Milner facility has adequate land to permit construction of an additional lagoon should future growth make it necessary, Zopf said.

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