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Why Ashland could spend 'millions' on its wastewater treatment plant in future years

Is it time for a major investment at the 83-year-old Ashland Wastewater Treatment Plant?

Grabbing a Sample

Editor's Note

We met with readers during our ‘Talk the Vote’ listening sessions and asked them what they wanted to see happen in their communities. Their thoughts were compiled into Citizens’ Agendas. This Solutions story looks at an idea introduced in a Citizens’ Agenda and examines how it is being tackled in another community.

ASHLAND — The stench of sewage warmed the cold air as Sherry Fair walked the city’s wastewater treatment plant on a cloudy October day — an unpleasant reminder of the plant’s essential, yet easy-to-ignore function.

“This section is the worst for the smell,” said Fair, a knowing smile spreading across the superintendent's face.

Dumping into Lang Creek

Sherry Fair, the superintendent of the Ashland Wastewater Treatment Plant, stands atop a culvert that discharges treated water back into Lang Creek, a tributary of Jerome Fork and part of the Mississippi Watershed.

The EQ Basin

The Ashland Wastewater Treatment Plant's equalization basin sits empty on a cold day in October 2022.

Keeping Track

An inked stylus makes squiggly marks on a of round piece of paper to track the Ashland Wastewater Treatment Plant's flow.