Blackfoot Valley Dispatch - The Blackfoot Valley's News Source Since 1980

By Roger Dey
Blackfoot Valley Dispatch 

LRFD funds new well for pump house


Roger Dey

In setting the annual budget for the Lincoln Rural Fire District last month, district trustees opted to commit $25,000 to the effort to make the districts in-town water pumping station operational.

The station was built over a three-year period from October 2012, when the original well was dug, to November 2015, when the current pump was installed and brought online. Since then it has produced neither the water volume nor pressure necessary to improve firefighting capabilities in Lincoln's downtown area or fill fire department trucks

LRFD chairman Bill Frisbee said the first step will be to determine where on the pump station easement they will locate the new well. Mark Christian with Montana Poverty Well Drilling will then set the new well and do a pump test to determine the volume of water it can produce.

"Once we know what it is capable of producing, we can work on the plumbing, and we've got a couple leads on pumps," he said. "Once we get that preliminary stuff done, it'll mean some plumbing into the building. We have to put a hole in the building and tap into the current set up there."

The existing diesel-powered pump will be removed and replaced with an electric pump. Frisbee said the board will then have to decide whether or not to sell disel pump.

Frisbee said the money earned by the fire department during last year's fires helped to cover the cost of the project.

"We have the money in the account to fund right now, so let's go ahead and get it taken care of," he said. He noted in May that $25,000 would be enough to fund a "worst case" scenario, but also said they hope the project cost will actually fall closer to the $10,000 mark.

A 2016 BVD analysis of available LRFD treasurers reports from September 2013 through December 2015 indicated the initial pump house construction costs exceeded $14,000.

Once completed, the well and pump house should improve the Insurance Services Office class ratings of buildings in the downtown Lincoln area, thereby lowering insurance costs.

"We're getting closer to fulfilling our promise to the taxpayers. We'll just take it one step at a time, make sure it's done correctly, and get it done," Frisbee said.


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