Water Commission budget contains $75 million line of credit for a NAWS water treatment plant

Dec 19, 2018

State Water Commission engineer Garland Erbele.
Credit ND Water Commission

In the state Water Commission budget, there is a $75 million line of credit to build a water treatment plant for the Northwest Area Water Supply System.

NAWS will take water from Lake Sakakawea to Minot and other areas of northwestern North Dakota.

State Water Commission engineer Garland Erbele said the plant is to be built at Max.

"That plant will be owned by the (Federal) Bureau of Reclamation," Erbele said. "They will reimburse us for the construction costs, but we have to 'upfront' the money."

Erbele said it makes sense just to borrow the money, knowing it will be repaid.

Erbele said the plant will be designed in 2019, and construction would likely begin in 2020. He said there’s other work to do on NAWS.

"We need to complete the line that runs between the Snake Creek Pumping Station and Minot," Erbele said. "There are still some gaps in the pipeline we have to complete."

Erbele said there's also a project to replace the intake at the Snake Creek plant.

"We're going to pull one of their large pumps and put a smaller pump in," Erbele said. "That will be more compatible for the water the NAWS system will draw."

Erbele said all the legal hurdles have been cleared on NAWS.