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Madison mayor wants to spend $425K on PFAS filtration system



MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Madison Mayor Satya Rhodes-Conway wants to spend $425,000 to design a system to filter PFAS chemicals out of a city well.

The mayor said the system would be the first in Wisconsin designed to filter the so-called “forever chemicals” out of drinking water.

Rhodes-Conway and Alderwoman Nasra Wehelie said they’ve drafted a resolution authorizing city water officials to contract with AECOM for up to $375,000 in design and engineering services for the system. The resolution includes another $50,000 for staff time.

City officials say a no-bid contract is necessary in order to submit the project for state grants in October. The money is part of $143 million the state is receiving through the infrastructure aid bill Congress passed last year. The bill provides $12.8 million in each of the next five years for projects targeting emerging contaminants in drinking water. Competition for the grants is expected to be stiff.

The city’s water quality manager, Joe Grande, said the filtration likely would cost about $670,000 to install and between $136,000 and $300,000 annually to operate depending on the level of PFAS contamination allowed.

The system would be used to clean up Well 15, which the city closed in 2009 after tests showed elevated levels of PFAS, likely stemming from the nearby Dane County Regional Airport.

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