Hayden gets energy impact grant
Hayden — The town of Hayden is now $300,000 closer to seeing its water plant receive some badly needed upgrades.
The state Department of Local Affairs informed town officials of its decision to award them an energy impact grant on Tuesday.
Hayden’s 25-year-old water plant has seen better days, and the town needs at least $1.4 million to improve the plant’s chlorine process and install a high-service pumping station to increase capacity.
“It was good news,” Hayden Town Manger Rob Straebel said. “It’s nice to have final confirmation that we will be seeing the money.”
Hayden received preliminary approval for the $300,000 grant on Oct. 19 from the state Advisory Committee for the Energy/ Mineral Impact Assistance Program.
Straebel, Mayor Chuck Grobe and Town Trustee Richard “Festus” Hagins traveled to Leadville to make the presentation before the committee, and they received unanimous support for their funding request.
The committee then forwarded its decision to the state Department of Local Affairs for final consideration.
Both the committee and the state agency understood that the energy industry’s effect on the town merited energy impact funding, Straebel said.
About 22 percent of all energy employees in Routt County reside in and around Hayden, he added.
“We can show them the strong impact from the energy industry on the town,” Straebel said.
With $200,000 already budgeted for the project, the town now has $500,000 to help improvements to the water plant get off the ground, Grobe said.
Hayden will not hear back on its application for a $1 million loan from the Colorado Water Resource and Power Development Authority until the committee meets again in December.
Grobe said he is hoping that the good fortune that helped the town receive the grant will carry over to its loan request.
“Anytime you can give more information about having that amount already in place, it can only help your case,” Grobe said.
Hayden’s efforts to obtain funding for improvements to its aging water plant have yielded strong support for some time.
In June, a local grant committee comprised of Routt County commissioners and representatives from area towns and two county coalmines named the project as the most important in the county.
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