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Sturbridge stimulus

Patrick in town to announce $15m grant for upgrade of sewer plant

Gov. Deval Patrick met Shane Moody of Veolia Water before reviewing the plans for upgrades to the wastewater treatment facility. Christopher Tanguay. (click for larger version)
January 28, 2010
STURBRIDGE —A state-of-the-art elementary school. Revamped town offices. New recreation fields. The common thread: a hefty impact on local tax bills.

With a number of capital improvement projects beginning to take shape in Sturbridge, residents are looking at a significant hike in property taxes over the next few years.

As many people struggle to pay the bills already in front of them, any relief from increased financial burden is certainly welcome.

A portion of that relief was offered Tuesday, Jan. 26, as Gov. Deval Patrick and U.S. Rep. Richard E. Neal, D-Mass., met with state and local officials to present Sturbridge with $15.1 million for upgrades to the town's wastewater treatment facility, which will equate to about $200 in savings on property taxes.

Patrick was welcomed to the Boston Road Extension wastewater treatment plant just after 1 p.m. by Interim Town Administrator Michael Racicot, DPW Director Greg Morse, Selectmen Mary Blanchard and Ted Goodwin, state Sen. Stephen Brewer, D-Barre, and state Rep. Todd Smola, R-Palmer among others in attendance.

The funds are possible via the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act and the state's Revolving Fund.

Patrick, who admitted the wastewater plant "is not a particularly sexy site," said the upgrades to the facility — which will include a nearly doubled capacity and cleaner output without increasing the existing footprint — would create about 100 jobs over the two-year phased project. Statewide, Patrick said, the overall stimulus effort will create approximately, "4,000 jobs all across the commonwealth."

See Thursday's Southbridge Evening News for complete coverage of community news.

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