Public Works Board approves $4.3 million in broadband and emergency construction grants and loans
Funds will repair emergency water projects in Chelan and Douglas counties, and connect nearly 600 unserved locations to high-speed internet
OLYMPIA, Wash. – The Washington State Public Works Board (PWB) recently approved $4.3 million in critical infrastructure projects in three communities. They include $575,000 in emergency construction projects and $3.7 million in broadband funding.
At its Oct. 19 special meeting called to address an emergency funding request, the PWB approved $400,000 for an emergency construction award in Chelan County.
- City of Leavenworth – $400,000 in emergency funding ($340,000 loan and $60,000 grant) to repair advanced deterioration in the city’s Pine Street Water Main. Without a replacement of this water main, the 26 single-family residences, three businesses, and two fire hydrants served by the main are at risk for substantial water service interruptions and a potential for non-existent fire flow. The project will install a temporary water system to serve affected customers during construction, replace the deteriorated water main, and repave disturbed asphalt.
At its Oct. 27 business meeting, the PWB approved $3.7 million for a broadband infrastructure project in Island County, and $175,000 for an emergency construction award in Douglas County.
- Whidbey Telecom – $3,723,727 low-interest loan for the Deer Lake West broadband infrastructure project. This project will design and construct an open access network with approximately 14.3 miles of middle and last mile fiber, bringing connectivity to approximately 584 unserved locations in the Deer Lake West area of Clinton, located on Whidbey Island.
- City of East Wenatchee – $175,000 in emergency funding ($148,750 loan and $26,250 grant) to replace a failed segment of stormwater line on North Baker Avenue. The city will remove this section of the stormwater system, which has caused pavement above the line to settle. Preliminary results show the remaining pipe is also in imminent danger of failure. A natural spring runs through the system that produces an estimated 30 gallons per minute year round. If another section of the pipe were to fail in an area with soils highly susceptible to erosion, the results could be catastrophic to the integrity of the system. The second phase of the project will utilize a replacement line to mitigate this risk and extend the system’s remaining life.
“The Washington State Public Works Board is proud to offer funding for these critical emergency repairs and broadband infrastructure construction projects in three Washington communities,” said PWB Chair Kathryn A. Gardow. “With favorable loan terms and below-market interest rates, the PWB makes funding affordable across multiple infrastructure systems, helping local jurisdictions meet their most urgent needs. Safe and functional infrastructure is fundamental to quality of life for all Washingtonians, and the PWB is proud to partner with communities to make life better for their residents.”
The PWB anticipates opening its next construction funding cycle in the spring of 2024 with up to $148 million in available resources, and a broadband funding cycle in November 2023 with over $15 million in state resources available. The PWB also offers funding for pre-construction and emergency construction projects on an ongoing basis until all available funds are exhausted.
For more information on Public Works Board programs and funding opportunities, visit pwb.wa.gov.