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Jette Meadows upgrades water system

POLSON — A new 200,000-gallon water tank nestles in the pines of Jette Meadows, a tangible symbol of five years of hard work for the Jette Meadows Lake County Water and Sewer District. 

The overhaul of the water system began with a well going dry about three years ago, but prior to that periodic shortages of water also had plagued Jette Meadows. 

Managing Engineer Shari Johnson said one of the first criteria was to form a water and sewer district, since most of the grants they applied for were available only to a public entity.

Russ Barber, president of the JMLCWSD, credited Johnson with guiding the group through a series of public meetings with the homeowners. 

“The (Jette Meadows) homeowners themselves backed us and were very supportive,” JMLCWSD board member Donna Terry commented.

Also the project was made possible only by the grants the group applied for and received, Barber said. 

The job was a shovel-ready project and qualified for the $750,000 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act grant.

“These guys (the JMLCWSD) jumped through hoops fast enough to get the money,” Johnson said.

The total budget for the project was $1,925,000. Grants and low interest loans from the State of Montana were $325,000 from the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund, $750,000 from the Treasure State Endowment Program and $100,00 from the Department of Natural Resources and Conservation.

Barber also thanked LHC Inc., the contractor, and Doug Peppmeier, the project engineer, from Thomas Dean and Hoskins.

The new storage tank increased the storage capacity from 84,000 to 200,000 gallons. Not only that but a new engineering system will ensure even pressure thoughout the Jette Meadows water system. While the JMLCWSD was revamping their system, they also installed larger water mains with fire hydrants in part of the system and added two 10,000-gallon fire tanker recharge stations. Fire department vehicles can fill their tanks from these stations instead of driving all the way to Polson and back.

“We expect these upgrades to our system will result in lower homeowner’s insurance premiums for us all,” Barber said. 

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