Lone Rock awarded loan, grants to improve drinking water

Emilie Conlon, Editor-in-Chief


The village of Lone Rock has been awarded a loan for upwards of $600,000 from the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) to address deficiencies in the village-owned drinking water systems. 

Delta 3 Engineering, based in Platteville, applied for the DNR’s Safe Drinking Water Loan Program and was awarded $623,469. Of those funds, $374,082 is designated as grant funds, and $249,387 is a low-interest loan, said Barr Nies, Vice President for Delta 3. 

The program offers loans to municipalities with interest rates that are either 33% or 55% of the current market value, depending on the financial need, said Kevin Olson, DNR community financial assistant. 

“The purpose of the program is to provide affordable financial assistance to municipalities for publicly owned drinking water infrastructure projects that are needed to protect public health and achieve or maintain compliance with federal and state regulations relating to water supply,” said Olson. ”The funding for this program is from the Wisconsin Environmental Improvement Fund (EIF) which is a state revolving loan fund that combines federal capitalization grants from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Clean Water and Drinking Water State Revolving Funds (SRFs) with state funding to provide affordable financial assistance to municipalities for publicly owned drinking water, wastewater, and storm water infrastructure projects that are needed to achieve or maintain compliance with federal and state regulations relating to water supply and wastewater treatment.” 

The village can use funding from the project to address issues with water mains, service leaks, deficient fire flow, leaking fire hydrants and leaking water valves, said Nies. 

Construction for the improvement project in Lone Rock was completed in this year. 

In addition to receiving funding from the DNR, Delta 3 submitted a Community Development Block Grant for Public Facilities application, which awarded the village with $725,000 for the water project. 

“The CDBG-PF and WDNR SDWLP grant funding and WDNR low-interest loan funding will significantly reduce the cost of the Project to the Village, and thus will significantly reduce the required water rate increase,” said Nies. 

The DNR loan program had 39 applications from 34 municipalities for 2021. Of those 39 projects, low-interest loan rates were awarded to all with 19 projects receiving grant funding.