Hermantown prepares to build water plant
Many rural Hermantown residents pump their own water from on-site wells, while others have to buy water from the city of Duluth. But if the results of a proposed study that the Hermantown City Council voted to go forward with on Monday night prov...
Many rural Hermantown residents pump their own water from on-site wells, while others have to buy water from the city of Duluth.
But if the results of a proposed study that the Hermantown City Council voted to go forward with on Monday night prove favorable, people in the city's more residential areas might one day draw water from their own water treatment plant.
Councilors voted unanimously to begin studying ways to build and operate a water treatment plant in Hermantown.
The study is being proposed out of frustration with the water rates charged to Hermantown by the city of Duluth.
Both Hermantown and the city of Proctor buy their municipal water from Duluth, and both have contested recent rate increases. And although the city of Duluth recently adjusted their rates so that Hermantown's rates were reduced, Hermantown Councilor Andy Thielen said the new proposed rate represents an increase of 4 percent because Duluth will no longer offer volume discounts.
The 45,000 gallons of water that Hermantown draws from Duluth each day might come from large wells, or possibly the "raw" water line that runs from Lake Superior to Cloquet, Thielen said.
"We need to be proactive on this," Thielen said.
It will take City Administrator Lynn Lander up to two months to draft a request for a proposal for the study, and it should be let after that.
Hermantown Mayor Keith MacDonald also was holding out hope that the city of Duluth would hold the water rates that they charge to outlying communities steady.
"We're still watching to see what the Duluth City Council does and hoping for a positive resolution to the water rates," MacDonald said.