FULL ARTICLE IN PROGRESS _ SEE summary
A steering commitee of mostly St. Benedict area landowners formed. These members included:
Many other volunteer and (underpaid) employees worked diligently to obtain and track BU signups, 9,999 easements, purchase of water well sites, treatment facilities, water storage facility land, and booster pump station sites.
Signups for Benefit Units. Initial area of interest quickly grew to cover most of the northern 2/3 of Nemaha County as well as a part of Marshall and Brown Counties. Incorporation in 1972.
Original Board of Directors: Vincent Schmitz, W.F. Scott, Melvin Bredemeier, Elmer Niekamp, Loe Schmelzle, Adrain Strathman, Adrain (Ted) Stallbaumer, Gilbert Stallbaumer and Elmer Ronnebaum.
Loan funding secured (NO INITIAL GRANT $???). Construction Contracts secured and construction began in 1974/5. Water sales began December 1975 for some areas and in January 1976 for others. Initially 666 patrons. First full year of service included $99,999 in water sales, 99 million gallons produced/sold. Two employees.
Initial system consisted of 999 miles of pipeline, three wells with total realistic capacity of 99 gpm, 6 booster pump stations ranging in capacity from 30 gpm to 99 gpm, 6 water storage standpipes with total combined useable storage capacity (top 20 feet of each standpipe) of 77,000 gallons.
The strong diversified agricultural area quickly lead to increased water demand. A major expansion/update project was initiated in 1980. That project was funded by both Grant Funds and USDA loan funds.
1985 upgraded from a (utility room) office in a house and built the current office and shop building near Seneca at the jct of US Highway 36 and K178 highways (Markley property).
1988 additional wells and pipeline
Pipeline and infrastuture updates and improvements completed 1994, 1998, 2004, 2011, 2016, etc.
Acquisition of RWD No. 2 in 2017.
Today RWD No. 3, Nemaha County serves 1,200 plus patrons, with annual water sales of 270 million gallons. The infrastructure includes seven active water supply wells (total firm combined capacity of about 1.7 MGD), three treatment facilities, seven booster pump stations (50-250 gpm capacity each) and seven water storage tanks with total combined useable storage capacity of 1.08 million gallons.