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Barry Township to move forward with potential water tower

Luke Froncheck

Staff Writer

A water tower may be in the works for the community of Delton.

Barry Township trustees voted at its monthly meeting on Tuesday to approve $22,000 to submit a full application to the United States Department of Agriculture Rural Development agency to determine if the township can qualify for federal grants to help pay for the $1.4 million project.

The application process is expected to take 4-6 months and township officials do not expect to hear back for another three months following that period. But with the application, the USDA will then be able to tell the township what portion of the costs will be by loan and what will be covered by grants.

In his presentation to the board at Tuesday's meeting, Steve Bishop of Fleis and Vandenbrink Engineering provided some considerations of the potentional water tower construction. He explained that when the water system in Delton was first constructed it included infrastructure that would allow a water tower to be built at a later date. The proposed tower tank will carry a 200,000-gallon capacity. Currently, there are only 102 properties on the water system in Delton, but the federal government limits the number to 150 without a water tower in place. Bishop said that, in addition to allowing for more potential properties to be added to the water system, a water tower would also increase reliability of the system. The township is hoping that construction of a water tower will help support future development inside and around Delton.

One woman, among several who stood to speak during Tuesday's meeting, asked if a water tower was needed given the slow growth rate inside Delton which she cited as only one or two houses each year attaching to the town's water system. Another man stood, however, and brought up the fact that when prior development projects were considered in Delton, they were halted due to the town's lack of a water tower.

The township did not vote to approve the tower itself, but rather to just move forward with an application process to see if any federal funds are available.

In other news, the township:

  1. Decided to stay at the state-mandated level for signatures required for all petitions. The board has had prior discussion about potentially raising the percentage of property owner signatures on a petition for sewer systems to 60 percent. After discussions with its lawyers and hearing public opinion, trustees voted gainst the suggestion.
  2. Passed an ordinance to move forward with the process of making Barry Township a designated flood plain so that residents inside the township have the option of purchasing flood insurance.
  3. Voted 3-2 to not accept the donation of an ambulance from Life Care. The board cited the vehicle's 400,000 miles and its potential for engine trouble in declining the donation offer.



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