City approval sought, irrigation an added benefit
Officials at Bil-Mar / Sara Lee in Storm Lake are seeking approval from the City of Storm Lake to build a new 540,000-gallon a day water refinement and treatment plant on 30 acres of land east of Bil-Mar, a facility that could potentially provide an irrigation source for up to 390 acres of farmland around the Storm Lake area.
The issue could have an impact on city plans for a $6 million municipal water plant expansion project. The city and its two large meatpacking plants have failed to come to an agreement on splitting the cost of such a project. Bil-Mar and IBP use about 60 percent of all the water consumed in the city.
Officials from Sheaffer International, a Naperville, Ill.-based company specializing in no-discharge wastewater recycling systems, will meet with the city in a special workshop on Oct. 21 to discuss the possibility of receiving a variance in a city code that would allow the new Bil-Mar water plant to be constructed. If the variance is granted, Bil-Mar could continue using the city's sanitary sewer system and build its own water treatment plant that would allow it to meet all of its individual water needs by the end of 2003.
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