Schumer To Feds: Funding Would Allow Economic Development To Flow Into Prattsburgh

Regional News
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PRATTSBURGH, NEW YORK (WETM-TV)- U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer urged the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) to expediently review and approve the Steuben County Industrial Development Agency’s application for $748,500 in federal funding to make sorely-needed upgrades to the wastewater treatment plant in the Town of Prattsburgh.

Numerous local businesses and stakeholder groups in the Town of Prattsburgh have emphasized the need for this investment, which is essential to sustaining and growing the region’s growing business sector.

Furthermore, Schumer explained, the investment is necessary to better serve the Prattsburgh Central School District campus, which relies on the wastewater treatment plant. For these reasons, Schumer threw his full support behind the Steuben County Development Agency’s worthy application, and called on the EDA to award the funding as soon as possible.

The Town of Prattsburgh, Schumer explained, is home to a historic business district with numerous buildings constructed before World War II.

The business district’s main anchor, the Empire Telephone Corporation, can be traced back in the town to 1896. Schumer explained that while the area does have a public water supply, but not a public wastewater system, with nearly every property in the community relying on an individual, on-site septic system.

The Prattsburgh Central School District Campus, however, is the only exception, which does have a small wastewater treatment plant.

Furthermore, Schumer detailed how the Empire Telephone Corporation plans to establish a new call center, warehouse, and associated service facilities in an existing building in the business district, but so far, has been unable to determine a reasonable solution for the expansion’s greater wastewater treatment needs.

The current lack of usable green space make the construction of an on-site septic system impossible. Additionally, Schumer said, any potential further growth would be stymied by the lack of access to a modern and reliable wastewater treatment plant.

Schumer said that the Town of Prattsburgh has put together a comprehensive plan to upgrade and further develop the school district’s wastewater treatment plant to help service the area’s burgeoning business district.

The project would build over 1,000 feet of wastewater collection sewer lines, manholes, and a pump station and would allow for further improvements to the facility’s treatment capacity. Additionally, the wastewater treatment plant upgrades would make currently-vacant storefront space usable and create the infrastructure necessary to support the town’s population growth from new staff at the proposed call center and service facilities.

Without the project, Schumer maintained, the retention of current jobs and further expansion of the area’s local businesses would be stymied. Schumer stated that funding from the EDA would not only promote economic development, but also the preservation of a long-standing cultural staple in Prattsburgh.


A copy of Schumer’s letter to EDA appears below:

Dear Dr. Fleming,

I write in support of the application to the U.S. Economic Development Administration submitted by the Steuben County Industrial Development Agency, on behalf of the businesses and stakeholder groups of the Town of Prattsburgh. The requested funding would support critical infrastructure upgrades to the wastewater treatment plant currently serving the Prattsburgh Central School District campus. This project is essential to sustaining and expanding the region’s rapidly growing business sector.

Prattsburgh has an historic business district with many buildings constructed before World War II. The anchor in the business district is the Empire Telephone Corporation, whose telephone services can be traced back in the town to 1896. While the area has a public water supply, because of the town’s older structures, nearly every property relies on an individual on-site septic system. The Prattsburgh Central School District campus is the only exception, which has a small wastewater treatment plant. The Empire Telephone Corporation plans for a new call center in an existing building in the business district, but has been unable to determine a reasonable solution for the expansion’s greater wastewater treatment needs. The current lack of usable green space make the construction of on-site septic system impossible. In addition, any potential further growth would be stymied by the lack of access to a modern and reliable wastewater treatment facility.

The Town has put together a comprehensive plan to upgrade and further develop the school district’s wastewater treatment plant to help service the area’s burgeoning business district. The project would build over 1,000 feet of wastewater collection sewer lines, manholes, a pump station, and would allow further improvements to the facilities treatment capacity. This project would also make useable currently vacant storefront space, and create the infrastructure needed to support the population growth from new staff at the proposed call center and service facilities. Without this project, the retention of current jobs and further expansion of the business industry face significant risk of decline. Funding from the EDA would not only promote economic development, but also the preservation of a long-standing cultural staple in Prattsburgh.

I applaud the Town of Prattsburgh and the role it continues to play in supporting the expansion of enduring New York businesses and hope its application for funding meets with your approval.

Thank you for your consideration.  Please do not hesitate to contact me or my grants coordinator in our Washington, DC office at 202-224-6542.

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