City commissioners are set to discuss a multi-million dollar project that could have major impact on future water rates.
Commissioners on Tuesday will discuss the need to make major repairs to the Bowersock Dam on the Kansas River.
The dam plays an important role in keeping river levels high enough for the city’s Kaw Water Treatment Plant to operate properly.
The future of the dam — built in 1874 — has come into question after a city-sponsored engineering study and federal regulators have expressed concerns about the integrity of the structure.
The city has budgeted about $1 million to conduct some repairs to the dam, but leaders with the Bowersock Mills & Power Co. — which uses the dam to produce electricity — believe a larger project likely is needed.
Any additional city costs would need to either be funded by increasing the city’s water rates or by using property tax money.
Commissioners will have a study session at 4:30 p.m. Tuesday to discuss the issue. They also plan to discuss the issue at their 6:35 p.m. meeting on Tuesday. Both meetings are at City Hall, Sixth and Massachusetts streets.