Estherville, IA (KICD)--Iowa Lakes Electric Cooperative is set to start working on a three phase project this year.
Vice President of Operations RIck Oleson tells KICD News they have submitted a trio of projects to FEMA for hazard mitigation after major weather events that occurred in 2009, 2010, and 2011.
Oleson says phase 1, which is set to ramp up this year, includes 20 miles of work throughout the ILEC service area replacing overhead lines with underground placement.
FEMA has provided over $500,000 towards this project, which will focus on areas where gravel roads are not cleared in the winter.
Phase 3 includes over 76 miles of overhead reconstruction in Buena Vista and Pocahontas Counties.
$1.6 million in FEMA funding has been approved for this project which will get underway either late this year or in early 2014. Phase 2 of the project features a mixture of overhead and underground reconstruction of 13 miles of power lines across the ILEC service area. Oleson says they expect to get word on Phase 2 very soon.
The FEMA funds provide 75 percent of the project cost with another 10 percent coming from the state.