Red Cliff gets $2 million, officials say |

Red Cliff gets $2 million, officials say

Chris Outcalt
Red Cliff, CO Colorado

RED CLIFF, Colorado – Replacing Red Cliff’s wastewater treatment plant is a project that’s at least 20 years overdue, but it’s finally getting some traction, said Ramon Montoya, Red Cliff’s mayor.

The latest push in the right direction is coming from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, otherwise known as the federal stimulus plan. The town doesn’t have the money yet, but Montoya said he’s been told it’s a sure thing – Red Cliff is getting $2 million in stimulus money.

“What I’m being told is that this is a done deal, we’re getting the $2 million,” Montoya said. “I don’t know what could possibly stop it at this point.”

The town has gotten a few grants the past few years, but the $2 million puts it close enough to the $5 million needed to fix the collection system and the plant. Montoya is actually starting to think about when work on the project might begin.

“We’re looking good,” he said. “We’re at the point where we can see that this is actually going to happen.”

Red Cliff regularly exceeds the capacity of its current sewer- and water-treatment facility and has repeatedly been cited by the state of Colorado for discharges into the Eagle River.

One of the biggest problems with the facility, said Montoya, is that water is seeping into the sewer lines.

“We’re basically taking in ground water,” he said. “We’re doubling the amount of stuff we’re sending through the plant.”

The town has received some money for the project prior to the $2 million in stimulus money, but the $2 million is the largest lump sum the town has received for the project.

State and federal officials visited Red Cliff last week as part of a training exercise about how to meet the stimulus bill requirements for tracking money that’s awarded – a process the town will have to be involved in, Montoya said.

“It’s very closely monitored,” he said.

Red Cliff will have to provide monthly financial reports on the project.

The town has a few more grant applications in the works, but hopes to start to fixing the wastewater collecting system sometime this summer and start work on the plan in October, Montoya said.

Staff Writer Chris Outcalt can be reached at 970-748-2931 or

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