Supporting Clean Water Projects in the Adirondacks

By David Miller - Adirondack Council Clean Water Program Coordinator
Wednesday, October 18, 2023

During the summer months many Adirondack towns were busy submitting their clean water infrastructure projects for sewer and drinking water facility upgrades to New York State for funding. These projects included new sewer pipes and lines, new pumping stations, new disinfection processes, new drinking water wells and more; all vital infrastructure needing replacement. The Adirondack Council worked with these towns and provided letters of support and advocacy for their efforts.

These grant applications are critical to the future health of Adirondack waters and safe drinking water, and while the Council is proud to support these efforts, it is important to note that none of the funding goes to or through the Council. Below are just some of the projects the Council’s Clean Water Program has assisted with recently.

A sign that says Sewage Treatment Plant Access Road

On sewer system upgrades, the Town of Ticonderoga submitted a clean water grant application to help fund its efforts to improve and replace parts of its sewage collection system, as well as upgrade their pumping stations. This funding will allow the town to separate its waste water and storm water systems more effectively. In Bolton, they needed grant support to replace an outdated (1950’s built) pump station to prevent sewage from entering Lake George. In Keene Valley, there is a need for funding to create a new drinking water production well and field station facility to ensure their residents get reliable and safe drinking water. In the Village of Lake George, a New York State clean water grant would go towards upgrading the Shepard Park Pump Station to ensure sewage from that area gets safely to the new wastewater treatment plant and not the waters of Lake George. And finally, at the Black Brook/Jay jointly-operated sewage treatment plant, they need funding to upgrade their disinfection system and phosphorus removal processes to protect local water bodies. 

All of these projects benefit the water quality of the Adirondacks and protect the health of its residents. These are but a sampling of the many current projects we at the Adirondack Council have supported and whose grant applications are under review now by the State of New York. And these needs do not end here, for already other communities in the Adirondack Park have projects at engineering design stages and will be applying next year under the next round of state and federal grant funding cycles.

Peak fall foliage is reflected in an Adirondack lake

In addition, the Environmental Bond Act passed by voters in 2022 has additional funding available for these types of clean water infrastructure efforts and hopefully can supplement other grants to towns in need. All of which will be critical to meet the over $200 million needed in clean water infrastructure projects moving forward. Whether it is projects in St. Armand, a new wastewater treatment plant in Elizabethtown or further modifications and upgrades at the Crown Point wastewater facility, clean water infrastructure projects on the horizon are all important to everyone in the Adirondack Park. The Adirondack Council will continue to advocate for more state and federal clean water grant funding, provide support to individual projects in towns across the region, and continue to host workshops and meetings for local government officials with state agencies.

Our local government leaders are working hard to address these issues, but they cannot do it alone. They need these grants to make projects viable and they need our support in advocating for them. I hope you will join our advocacy efforts to make all Adirondack clean water projects a priority and thus a clean water reality.

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