|Mayor Watkins and City Council members thank Bob Summers|
HAYTI, MO- What do you get when you combine a low water table, an old water plant in disrepair and no money to fix it? In Hayti, Missouri they were getting citations from MoDNR and the quality of the water their citizens were drinking was terrible. Mayor Bobby Watkins said, “Our water was so bad nobody wanted to drink it and it became the number one issue I believe I was elected to take on.”
Schultz and Summers Engineering was asked to help Hayti fix their water quality problems and they immediately sent Marvin Nesbit to assess the situation. Marvin has helped dozens of communities find the resources they needed provide sewer and water services to their residents. Nesbit added, “Hayti had a serious problem with their water treatment plant. DNR was all over them about it and they desperately needed to get it fixed.”
SSE looked at their current plant as well as the old plans and designed a new system that would meet the needs of their citizens, not only today, but well into the future. The city council took the design and presented it to the voters and a bond issue was passed with an unbelievable 91%. Watkins said, “Our citizens wanted this problem fixed and Marvin, along with all the SSE engineers, came to our public meetings explained the process and answered any questions that the voters asked. As a first term mayor having someone like Marvin, who had been through the process before and knew how everything worked, made my job a lot easier.”
Schultz and Summers helped apply for the grants and low interest rate loans available through the government programs. They helped them with the initial design and costs estimates and made sure all the required paperwork was filled out properly and turned into the USDA. Owner Bob Summers added, “Sometimes it is hard for a small town to afford hiring an engineer to get all the cost estimates and initial designs done before they have been awarded any grants. Providing rural residents with clean drinking water is important to our company and that’s why we take a chance and provide preliminary work for free to help get the funding they need.”
|Mayor Watkins and Bob in front of new Water Plant|
Hayti was awarded a $1.9 million grant from the USDA, which allowed them to move forward on completing the design and hiring a contractor to make the improvements. With SSE’s help their plan was approved and they quickly received their grant. Through the normal bidding process Robertson Construction was picked to build the new plant.
The new plant will be much cheaper to operate. It will produce 1,200 gallons of clean drinking water per minute but use half the electricity, half the chemicals and half the manpower to operate in comparison to the City’s old plant. The City estimates that they will save over $50,000 a year with the new treatment plant. Mayor Watkins added, “This plant will be able to produce enough water to handle even emergency situations such as a fire and we now have a generator so that if we lose power, because of an ice storm, our citizens will still have water. To have a plant that is cheaper to operate but produces more and cleaner water is a dream come true.”
|Dan Koehler in front of 1938 plant|
Additionally, Hayti had enough money to repair and fix several water lines, rehabilitate two elevated water towers, as well as purchase a radio read water meter system for the entire city. “We were able to keep costs down and save money which allowed Hayti to not only build the new plant but to also make other needed repairs to the system,” commented Summers.
The plant was brought on line in February of 2011 and a ribbon cutting was held in March to announce the official opening. Over 50 community leader joined the city council members and Mayor Watkins in celebrating this historic milestone for the city of Hayti. Mayor Watkins concluded, “Schultz and Summers played a huge part in making this happen. They were there from the beginning and walked us through the whole process starting with public meetings, the bond election, the application process, the bidding process to construction and testing and to finally supplying clean water. Without Dan Koehler, Marvin Nesbit and Bob Summers we couldn’t have done it.” He added, “Since the new treatment plant came on line people stop me all the time and say how happy they are to be able to actually drink the water from their tap!”