Town of Newfane eyes grants for needed water, sewer projects | News

The Newfane town board is looking to obtain grant funding to complete a pair of infrastructure improvement projects.

Last month the board hired the consulting firm Municipal Solutions to seek grant funding through the state Environmental Facilities Cooperation to cover a potential $2.2 million bond to replace a series of “aged” waterlines in an area along West Lake Road in Olcott.

“While we’re working at the west berm area, there is some paving that we want to get done, but we also recognize that there is not the optimum water line distribution there,” town supervisor John Syracuse said.

The project is slated to be done in three phases starting with modification of the existing water system and adding a connection point for the new waterline. Following that, a new waterline main will be installed along West Lake Road.

“For economic development purposes throughout that area, we need to reinvest into this water line,” Syracuse said.

Separately, upgrades and the search for grant funding for the town’s wastewater treatment plant are ongoing.

In May, U.S. Rep. Claudia Tenney disclosed her nominees for Fiscal Year 2025 Community Project Funding. Her office backed requests for 15 projects in the 24th Congressional District including $3 million for the upgrades at the Newfane wastewater treatment plant.

“We’re very excited about that,” Syracuse said. “Although it doesn’t mean that we have the money, there’s some other congressional processes that it needs to go through, but it’s on the list… we’re in a better position than we were (several) months ago.”

Work at the plant commenced late last year. If the town ultimately obtains grant funding, Syracuse said that will cover a “sizable portion” of the bill for remaining upgrades.

Previously the town was awarded a $1.84 million grant from the New York State Water Infrastructure and Improvement Act Program and a $1 million Community Development Block Grant from the state, bringing its total grant funds to $2.84 million. Syracuse estimates the total cost of the project is between $8 million and $9 million.

Any costs not covered by grants would be financed through a 0% interest loan.

Planned upgrades to the wastewater treatment plant include new piping, sludge pumps and aeration blowers.

Originally, the upgrades were planned in tandem with the town’s agreement to treat wastewater from the Village of Wilson. That deal is off now, but the upgrades will be done anyway.

Currently, Syracuse estimated, the upgrades are at “a little over 20% completion.” The work is slated to be completed by October 2025.

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