Planning is underway in Tempe for work that will see the improvement of treatment processes and capacity in the city’s water and wastewater treatment plants.
Last month, 70% of voters in the southern Arizona city of nearly 200,000 approved a $134 million bond to fund the water and wastewater projects, funding that will also go for the upgrading of water distribution and storage infrastructure.
By design, the $134 million will additionally target upgrading work and new construction with the city’s sewer infrastructure and reclamation facilities.
Another bond, set at $74 million, will fund the construction and upgrading of streets, highways, avenues, bike paths and bridges across Tempe.
That smaller bond, which passed with 69.7% of the vote, will also be used for storm drain improvements.
The funding from both bonds must be spent over a 5-year period.
This spring, members of the Tempe City Council were hesitant to put the bond questions on the November ballot given the state of the pandemic economy, and actually reduced the dollar amount of the proposed bonds.
A mitigating factor in favor of having a bond election was the recent history of such questions: Tempe voters have approved five large bond proposals going back to 2002.
Altogether, Tempe voters this year approved some $349 million in bonds for a variety of public improvement efforts.
By Garry Boulard
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