Shoshoni requesting ARPA money to address issues that led to boil-water order last month

    Shoshoni is applying for three American Rescue Plan Act grants that should help address the issues that led to a boil-water order in town last month.

    The problem arose during a July 29 storm, when “either a massive power surge or lightning” triggered a “cascading of systems failures” within the municipal water system, town clerk Chris Konija said.

    The situation caused the town’s water pressure to drop, prompting the Environmental Protection Agency to issue a boil-water alert at about 4 p.m. July 29, Mayor Joel Highsmith said.


    The alert was in place through Aug. 3, Highsmith said during a special Shoshoni Town Council meeting held that day.

    He noted that water tests conducted daily during the boil-water order all came back “negative.”

    “We never had one bad sample,” Highsmith said. “They all came back good.”

    Regardless, he pledged to “strive to do better the next time.”


    “That’s something we need to really look at in the future – what we can do to try to prevent this happening again,” he said. “We definitely need to continue to do more work on our water system.”

    Three requests

    The three ARPA grant requests the council approved during a regular meeting Aug. 9 would be used to “upgrade and modernize” the town’s “old and outdated” water system, Konija said.

    The first is for $1.13 million to help with well and well-house repairs and improvements, he said.


    The second is for about $580,000 to assist with water storage tank repairs, improvements and access, Konija said, and the third is for almost $280,000 to help replace the town’s water monitoring system.

    Konija said the current system does not allow for off-site monitoring.

    He would also like to install towers that could prevent lightning strikes from affecting the town water system in the future.


    The ARPA money Shoshoni applied for is available through the State Loan and Investment Board for water and sewer infrastructure.

    Lander and Riverton have both submitted applications to the same program.

    For more information call the Town of Shoshoni at 876-2515.


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