Board Applies for Loan to Finance Natural Gas Pipeline

Peter Clark at Wednesday's Chamber of Commerce coffee. On the left is Gail Symons. (Photo by Pat Blair)

The Tongue River Valley Joint Powers Board will apply this week for a $4 million loan to help finance construction of a natural gas pipeline that will serve the towns of Dayton and Ranchester, including the schools in those towns.

Ranchester Mayor Peter Clark, who's chairman of the joint powers board, said the loan is through a USDA rural development program and would be for 40 years at a little over 3 percent.

Clark said interest rates are adjusted quarterly, so the joint powers board is trying to get everything in by the first of April, to take advantage of the current low rates. Clark, who was interviewed by Sheridan Media Wednesday morning, said he didn't have a count of how many people had committed to the natural gas pipeline. But he said he'd been told that Dayton had at least 50 commitments by that time. He said that response has been good so far.

Clark said the joint powers board will also have to commit to a reserve account for the project, but he wasn't sure Wednesday how much that would be. He said the joint powers board also has an application with the State Loan and Investment Board for a $1 million grant. He said if the grant is awarded, the USDA would cut the loan by that amount.

View another photo below.

Another photo of Clark, center, at the Chamber coffee. (Photo by Pat Blair)