Norwich asks federal government for $5M

By Matt Porter

March 19, 2013 Updated Mar 19, 2013 at 11:17 PM EDT

Norwich, NY (WBNG Binghamton) The city of Norwich has applied for $5 million in loans from the federal government to replace its water treatment plant.

The city's current treatment plant was built in 1904. The 109-year-old plant has had several updates along the way.

However, the city's ability to pump and filter its water has decreased as the plant has aged.

The money is part of a U.S. Department of Agriculture loan package that will be paid back over the next 30 years.

Republican Mayor Joseph Maiurano said the time has come for a new plant.

"This plant will be up for 50 to 100 years, so it will be paid off over 30 years, and as we work into it, we try to get more grant money versus the loan," Maiurano said.

The new plant would service more than 15,000 residents in and around Norwich with clean water.

The city says residents will not see their bills jump more than a typical annual increase because the city has been setting aside money for the project.

If approved, construction could begin as early as this spring.

The new plant could be finished by 2015.