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Bloomington council looks to spend $9M in ARPA funding to upgrade water, sewer systems

Flood damage reports from heavy weekend rains that overloaded storm and sometimes sanitary sewer systems were expected to continue streaming in all week.
Charlie Schlenker
On Monday, Bloomington City Council members are expected to vote on spending $9 million to improve the city's water and sewer systems.

The Bloomington City Council is expected to vote Monday on using the bulk of its $13.4 million in American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding — $9 million — to upgrade its aging underground water and sewer systems.

The city council’s regular meeting will begin at 6 p.m. at the Government Center downtown.

Last summer, heavy rains caused heavy flooding in Bloomington's older neighborhoods, revealing the extent of the infrastructure problems.

City council members stressed the need for funding roads and sewers with APRA money when they discussed the issue last fall.

The city also plans to dedicate $2.2 million on economic development and another $2.2 million on what the city described as socioeconomic opportunities.

The resolution does not list specific projects to receive funding. City staff plans to seek submit projects for approval once they are identified.

Ward maps

The council also is expected to approve a new ward map that will reshape the city's nine wards ahead of next year's municipal elections.

City staff created four map options that offset population shifts over the last decade. The city's east side has gained residents, the west side has lost residents. The council also reviewed one map presented by the public.

During a non-voting meeting last week, several council members expressed preference for two options that place downtown within one ward (Ward 6).

Staff also created a new map option based on recommendations from the council.

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Eric Stock is the News Director at WGLT. You can contact Eric at ejstoc1@ilstu.edu.
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