May 13, 2020

Contact: Communications Office

Department of Natural Resources awards nearly $1 million to Van Buren for new regional sewer connection

JEFFERSON CITY, MO, MAY 12, 2020 – The Missouri Department of Natural Resources has awarded a total of $981,050 in financial assistance to the city of Van Buren to connect wastewater flow from the Deer Run Reorganized Common Sewer District to Van Buren’s wastewater treatment system. Provided through the Clean Water State Revolving Fund Regionalization Incentive Grant program, this grant will fund 100% of the project’s eligible construction costs and is expected to be completed by April 2022.

The department’s Regionalization Incentive Grant is a competitive grant program that offers funding to municipalities as an incentive to construct connections for small, struggling facilities. The entities responsible for these small facilities often lack the financial and technical resources to upgrade their wastewater treatment facilities to meet more stringent limits and operate their facilities appropriately. These facilities typically serve such a small number of connections that the cost to comply with permit conditions is a significant financial challenge for the users.

“Water and wastewater systems are essential infrastructure that support community health and economic vitality,” said Governor Mike Parson. “We are committed to doing all we can to help Missouri communities maintain and improve their water treatment systems so they can continue to grow and thrive.”

“Building new partnerships can be the key to helping small communities find solutions to problems they can’t solve on their own,” said Carol Comer, director of the Department of Natural Resources. “The intent of this grant is to facilitate regional partnerships that would not be possible otherwise. Projects funded through the grant will reduce the number of point sources releasing pollutants to the state’s waterways and develop infrastructure that benefits the local economy.”

“The city of Van Buren and our partners in the Deer Run Reorganized Sewer District are so happy about this grant,” said Van Buren Mayor Mike Hoerner. “Deer Run has had a long-standing sewer treatment problem which has affected the Current River, part of the Ozark National Scenic Riverways. The grant will allow us to partner with Deer Run to resolve the issue by constructing a connection between our two systems. Once it is constructed, Deer Run’s sewer will be treated by Van Buren’s system. Without the grant, we honestly don’t know how the situation would have ever been resolved. We want to thank MoDNR and their great staff for helping us.”

The department’s Financial Assistance Center is committed to working with communities to assist with water and wastewater infrastructure improvement projects. These projects will be funded wholly with monies received from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

For more information on wastewater and drinking water funding opportunities, visit