Environmental notebook

Posted: November 21, 2017 at 1 a.m.

Commission approves loans

The Arkansas Natural Resources Commission has approved up to about $4.2 million in loans to four water and wastewater utilities.

A loan of up to $3 million over up to 20 years will go to Riversouth Rural Water District, which has 1,695 customers, to connect to the Franklin-Sebastian Public Water Authority and for improvements of a water line along Deer Track Trail and Arkansas 23.

The commission will also loan up to $600,000 over up to 20 years to the city of Norphlet to construct 23,250 feet of a sewer pipeline connecting treatment ponds to Smackover Creek. The city has 319 customers.

Midway Public Water Authority will get a loan of $550,000 over up to 10 years to replace water meters and prevent revenue losses related to old meters for its 880 customers.

A grant of up to $92,700 will go to Wabbaseka, which has 127 sewer customers, to rehabilitate two sewer lift stations.

The commission also elected to recall funds from three cities: $280.34 from Alicia, $77,250 from Running Lake and $2,880 from Turrell. In all three places, the projects were completed and no longer needed funding.

Two corps members selected for panel

President Donald Trump has appointed a new president of the Mississippi River Commission and a new commission member, according to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

Maj. Gen. Richard Kaiser will be the president, and Col. Paul Owen will join the commission.

Kaiser is the commander and division engineer of the Corps' Mississippi Valley Division in Vicksburg, Miss., according to a news release from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Kaiser has also been commanding general of the Combined Security Transition Command and deputy chief of staff for Security Assistance, Headquarters, Resolute Support in Afghanistan.

Owen is the commander and division engineer of the Corps' Southwestern Division in Dallas. He formerly served as the chief of staff for the Corps in Washington, D.C.

The commission, created by Congress in 1879, oversees improvements along the Mississippi River, including flood prevention and navigation enhancement.

Pollution board wraps up its year

The Arkansas Pollution Control and Ecology Commission has canceled its final meeting of 2017.

The commission, which is the appellate body for the Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality, was scheduled to meet Dec. 1.

The meeting was canceled, according to an email from the commission's secretary, because of a lack of agenda items.

NW News on 11/21/2017