Collins community gets good news on two fronts

Marlys BarkerTri-County
Times Editor

The little town of Collins has had its share of good news recently.

The community not only received a United Way grant totalling $5,500 that will be used to make improvements to its library; it also, just last week, received word of a savings of $21,662.50 through the Iowa State Revolving Fund’s interest rate reduction.

At the library, Director Kayla Longren is excited about the United Way grant, which will allow for new handicap accessible doors to be put on the facility.

“The doors were the only thing holding the library back from a tier 3 status,” Longren said. According to both Longren and Collins Mayor Brett Comegys, very few small town libraries have a tier 3 status, which will increase some of the library’s funding for more services.

“It is unusual for such a small library to be that status, but for me, as a newer library director, I have worked very hard to make this happen, as well as the mayor helping with grants,” Longren said. She said the extra funds the library can now receive will help advance library programming, giving more options for toddlers through adults.

At city hall, City Clerk Theresa Findlay said the State Revolving Fund interest rate reduction is great news for the residents of Collins.

“Basically, it will help delay an increase in water rates,” she said.

The savings will be realized on a 20-year note from the city’s water main replacement project of 2006. Over the life of the loan, the city’s rates have been reduced, giving Collins the $21,662.50 that it would have paid in full.

Collins was one of 16 communities to receive the rate reduction. In all, those communities save $1.9 million.

In a release from the Iowa Finance Authority and Iowa DNR, it is noted that the state revolving fund is one of Iowa’s primary sources for financing projects designed to improve Iowa’s water quality.

“Due to the success of the State Revolving Fund’s programs and excellent financial management, the interest rate for loans that are more than 10 years old have been nearly cut in half to 1.75 percent,” said Iowa Finance Authority Executive Director Dave Jamison.