Barnstable DPW Director Mark Els
The Town of Barnstable has received over $6 million through the Recovery Act to help fund much-needed wastewater, energy and road projects. Recently, Jeffrey Simon, director of the Massachusetts Recovery and Reinvestment Office, took a trip to the town to see the impact stimulus funds have had on these projects, on the town and on its citizens.

"The Governor sent me out to look at projects so I can understand what is going on in the field," said Simon. "I can't do that sitting in my office in Boston."

Barnstable's population swells from about 55,000 people year round to about 130,000 in the summer season. The town has to develop its infrastructure for maximum capacity, Mark Els, the town's Director of Public Works, told Simon,

Barnstable Treatment Facility
and the existing upgrades are essential to accommodate the town's current and future growth.

Part of that plan involves implementing the town's clean water project which includes putting in new sewers and water main replacements around Stewart's Creek in Hyannis in areas that have water quality issues and further addressing those issues with improvements to the Hyannis Water Pollution Control Facility. The project received over $1 million in stimulus help.

Jeffrey Simon and State Rep. Atsalis
"We are addressing bacterial issues and drinking water issues," said Els. "It's a balancing act of what's going on above ground and underground and it is critical to us."

The town's drinking water project, which received $705K in stimulus help, involves repairing and improving two water treatment facilities, 12 well pump stations, two storage tanks and distribution water pipes. Els noted that the stimulus funding minimized the cost for the town.

"The Governor took a lot of heat early on in the stimulus program for the way he did the State Revolving Fund program," noted Simon. "Some states funded two to

Jeffrey Simon and Mark Timmerman
three programs in total but the Governor leveraged those funds to make a lot of those projects happen. Massachusetts with only two percent of the country's population has produced $800 million of construction value with those subsidies, the highest in the country. Now the program is featured as an ARRA success story."

Another success story is that of Dennis-based construction firm, Robert B. Our, which is the contractor for both the town's clean water and drinking water projects. Our also secured contracts for two other-stimulus-funded projects on the Cape. According to Mark Timmerman, Our's superintendent for the pump station project, the company

Barnstable Treatment Plant
brought in 30 employees thanks to stimulus.

"Before stimulus we were struggling to get work," he said. "The company laid off about 25 guys. We brought back some of those guys and others. Stimulus got us through some bad times."

Stimulus is also helping the town with its green energy upgrades. The town's wastewater treatment facility, which processes nearly two million gallons of wastewater a day, is now able to install Variable Speed Drives and other upgrades to the motors on the plant's pumping and aeration systems. The plant will also house two 100kW wind turbines and a 800+ kW solar photovoltaic system. This is

Barnstable Treatment Plant
the state's second largest solar installation under the stimulus plan.

In total, the annual energy savings from these upgrades will be $250K, 1,000 kW of green power generation from the solar and wind power and nearly 2,000 tons of carbon dioxide emission reductions.

Those numbers impressed Simon. "I am amazed at the creativity that is coming out in all of this," he said. "I don't know how towns are managing these days. I have tremendous admiration for you guys in these tough economic times."

John Klimm, Barnstable's town manager had a simple explanation for the town's success. "The state has been a true partner," he said.