Bozeman, MT, Apr 20, 2012 -- In recognition of Earth Day 2012, USDA Rural Development in Montana singled out Gallatin Gateway’s upcoming wastewater project as an example of environmental stewardship that benefits the community.
“It is critical that communities across the country have reliable, clean and abundant water,” said U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack. “These water and wastewater projects demonstrate how USDA is helping provide critical services to rural communities that have the added benefit of protecting the environment. This Earth Day, USDA is commemorating 150 years of working with Americans to protect the land. In the years to come, we will help address the changing needs of agriculture and rural America – and find strategies for managing our public and working lands that promote a strong middle class today while preserving the environment for generations to come.
The $4.3 million Gallatin Gateway wastewater project was approved by the community through a bond vote earlier this year. USDA Rural Development will provide $3.4 million of the funding in loans and grants, with the balance being provided by Montana’s Department of Commerce and Department of Natural Resources. The community, southwest of Bozeman, Mont. is nestled in the mouth of the Gallatin National Forest as you head south toward Yellowstone National Park.
With properties dating back over a century, and a small but growing community – the individual septic systems have become overtaxed and outdated. The businesses and homeowners are unable to meet modern requirements for wastewater treatment and could put the water safety of the nearby Gallatin River at risk. The Gallatin Gateway wastewater project, currently under design, will construct a collection system, storage tank, and drain field. This will provide approximately 250 homes and businesses in the community. Construction is expected to begin this summer and be completed by 2013.
Matt Jones, Rural Development State Director for Montana, said “Gallatin Gateway is a prime example of what Rural Development can do for a community, and on this Earth Day it is even more important to recognize ways communities are helping to improve their local environment. We stand ready to assist in other much-needed projects not just here in Gallatin County, but across Montana.”
USDA, through its Rural Development mission area, administers and manages housing, business and community infrastructure and facility programs through a national network of state and local offices. Rural Development has an active portfolio of more than $165 billion in affordable loans and loan guarantees. These programs are designed to improve the economic stability of rural communities, businesses, residents, farmers and ranchers and improve the quality of life in rural America.