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Portals new sewer system progresses
Construction of pumping station, treatment plant nears completion
Portal sewer
Eagle Utility employee William Highfield works to remove a pine tree that was in the way of progress Thursday morning as workers continue to install Portal's new sewer system. - photo by HOLLI DEAL BRAGG/staff
    Utility crews were busy Thursday morning taking down trees and preparing to install sewer lines along Portal's Main Street as the city's first phase of new sewer construction progresses.
    The project will take two phases to complete, said Portal Mayor Larry Motes. A grant from the Georgia Environmental Facilities Authority (GEFA) for $100,000 and a Community Development Block Grant of $500,000 is funding the first phase.
    Construction of a pumping station and treatment plant began in March and are nearing completion. Motes said the first phase of the sewer system will extend to cover most of the town's northwestern region, including Portal Middle/High School.
    The pumping station is located on First Avenue and the treatment plant is near Pecan Grove, on lands owned by Chip Smith, he said. Smith is leasing the property to the City of Portal at no cost, providing an area for the holding pond and a spray field, he said.
    Water treated at the facility will be contained in the pond, and eventually sprayed over a sod farm. This benefits Smith and helps the city save money by not having to purchase property for the holding pond and spray field, Motes said.
    After the first phase is completed, likely this fall, Portal leaders will apply for another grant to fund the second phase, which will only consist of installing sewer lines to  the rest of the town, he said.
    The treatment plant will be able to handle 100,000 gallons daily, and will be expandable to handle 400,000 gallons, he said.

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