Tea, South Dakota — It looks like most of the funding to get the Lewis & Clark water pipeline to Sibley has been accounted for.

Troy Larson, who is the executive director of the Lewis & Clark Regional Water System tells us that the Bureau of Reclamation has announced that the system is receiving $60 million in FY23 from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law.

Larson says that combined with the $18.6 million included in the FY23 Appropriations Bill that was signed into law on December 29, 2022, it brings total FY23 funding to $78.6 million for the ongoing construction of the tristate drinking water project.

Larson tells us the $60 million will be used for the Sibley service line, Sibley meter building and Phase 3 of the water treatment plant. Among other things, Phase 3 includes two more solids contact basins, a second gravity thickener and another lime slaker.

Larson says Sibley will get its water from the Minnesota pipeline, which will come down from the Adrian area as a branch of the Worthington line.

He says this funding does not get the project across the finish line in terms of completing the 44.19-million-gallons-per-day base system, but it gets it really close.

Larson says, “Depending on the FY24 funding levels from the Appropriations Bill and Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, we hope next year will be the last year federal funding is needed for the base system.”

The pipeline that will serve Sheldon will come from Hull. The pipeline from Sioux Center to Hull has been in use for several years to sell Sioux Center water to Hull. And the line to Sioux Center from Beresford has been completed too. Work on the line from Hull to Sheldon is underway, with the $16.4 million contract awarded last August.

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