Pine Ridge is the most populous community in Oglala Lakota County, SD with a population of 3,308. It is located inside the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation and is the tribal headquarters for the Oglala Sioux Tribe.
The lift station in Pine Ridge was in very poor condition with pump failure and raw sewage discharge occurring far too often. The lift station was nearing the end of its useful life. The Oglala Sioux Tribe (OST) was in compliance with all applicable regulations, but at times when the lift station pumps would fail causing environmental and health concerns.
To protect the health and safety of the residents of Pine Ridge, a new double box culvert duplex lift station, all necessary appurtenances to fully replace the existing lift station, and an emergency standby generator were installed.
These improvements eliminated any further discharge and it meets the existing and future needs for pumping sewage to the water and waste treatment facility. The final analysis is that the upgrades provide reliable infrastructure for this rural community and it protects the health and safety of its residents.
USDA Rural Development assisted with this project through Water and Waste Loan and Grant funds totally $760,000. The federal funding was leveraged with grants from Indian Health Service (IHS) of $265,000 and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) of $493,000 bringing the total project cost to $1,518,000.
“As the operator of the systems, I sincerely appreciated the combined efforts and resources,” said Robert Pille, Oglala Sioux Tribe Water and Sewer Director. “We have a fantastic responsibility to provide services to our proud first nation people and this project will improve the living conditions and the health of the Oglala Sioux Tribe. As we move forward, water and sewer will move from crisis management to asset management and have a far better operations and maintenance system going forward. I thank the entire team for this project. The results are already providing a huge benefit to our operations. Wopila Tanka! (Many Thanks!).”