10/22/11 – Members of the public have the opportunity to go through the city of Beaver Dam’s new wastewater treatment plant Saturday. The Open House is meant to allow the public to tour the cutting-edge facility. The city was awarded $20 million in stimulus money in 2009 to expand their outdated plant and incorporate green technology into the upgrade. The former plant was six years beyond its design life, operating at 140% to 170% of its capacity. Half the $20 million was an outright grant while the other half was a low-interest, tax-free loan. A public-private partnership with Kraft Foods is allowing the city to pre-treat waste from the company and convert it to biogas, benefiting both entities and generating electricity that city is selling back to Alliant Energy at a profit. The project allows Beaver Dam to keep sewer usage fees at among the lowest in the state; $39 for the average resident, compared to the statewide average of $93. The Open House is being held from 10am until 2pm.