Construction of a new septic facility in Clearwater should begin in the next couple of months thanks to a $1.4-million investment from the federal government.
The money, promised by Kamloops-Thompson-Cariboo MP Cathy McLeod at an announcement Saturday, comes from the Tory's Gas Tax Fund.
An additional $91,000 will go toward turning the long abandoned Dutch Lake elementary into a much-needed community centre.
"They're both really good projects, really needed," Clearwater Mayor John Harwood told The Daily News after the announcements.
The bulk of the gas tax money will create a septic facility in Clearwater. Harwood said work has begun on a related project in Barriere.
Septic was stored at landfills in Blue River, Clearwater and Barriere. With the Thompson-Nicola Regional District closing these facilities in favour of eco-depots, the waste would instead be shipped to a landfill in Heffley Creek.
"Which would have been a huge bill for everybody. And talk about a carbon footprint," said Harwood, adding the new facilities will negate this need.
About 90 per cent of North Thompson resident rely on individual septic systems.
As for Dutch Lake elementary, which the Kamloops-Thompson School District closed almost a decade ago, the federal government will contribute $91,000 toward renovations. Harwood said his community will provide an additional $50,000.
He said the municipality will lease the building from the school district for $1 a year for 25 years.
The community centre will include a seniors' facility, said Harwood.
McLeod said investments like this are important drivers of economic growth and job creation.