Success Story
Release No.STELPRD4017980
, Aug 22, 2012 --

Several rural communities in Northeast Nebraska experienced issues with their water quality (nitrates) and, in some instances, quantity. The common water issues that these communities and rural areas faced provided the encouragement to develop a regional water source.

Financing from USDA Rural Development of nearly $2.4 million allowed construction of a regional water system encompassing five rural communities. This project involved the collaboration of a number of parties to bring it to completion, including the Lewis and Clark Natural Resources District (NRD), Lower Elkhorn NRD, Northeast Nebraska Resource Conservation and Development, Midwest Assistance Program, Nebraska Rural Water Association, Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services, the Villages of Wausa, Coleridge, Belden, Magnet, McLean, and the rural users located adjacent to these communities. The Lower Elkhorn NRD took the lead in the formation of the rural regional water system.

The project included the development of a new water source for the communities of Magnet, McLean, Belden, and additional rural users. The new system consists of two water sources and transmission systems. One water source is provided by the Village of Coleridge and supplies water to the Village of Belden. The second water source is provided by the Village of Wausa and supplies water to the Villages of Magnet and McLean and additional rural users. The Village of Wausa’s water source also included the development of a new water storage tank, which not only serves the needs of the regional water system, but also that of the Village. The regional water system allows these communities to have water systems that are in compliance with the standards of the Safe Drinking Water Act.

Stan Staab, Lower Elkhorn Natural Resources General Manager said, “Rural water systems continue to be very important to our citizens as groundwater quality declines. Well designed systems provide high quality domestic supplies which enhance lives in small communities and farmsteads. Lower Elkhorn NRD is very proud to be a partner in this project.”