Technical Specialist Spotlight: Cynthia Castellon, PE
Senior Environmental Engineer Cynthia Castellon has been consulting for clients using her experience in planning and design for the past 12-years. Her skills as an engineer vary widely, having overseen water and wastewater treatment process optimization and design; facility planning, design, and construction; water supply planning and drinking water master plans; environmental permitting; cost analysis, and preparation of state revolving fund applications and documents.
Cynthia’s expertise in navigating funding applications has been especially helpful as businesses navigate the potential need for stimulus funding or grants while pursuing infrastructure projects. Over the last 6-years, she has prepared funding applications for seven municipalities across the State of Connecticut. Specifically, Cynthia has guided clients through the Clean Water Fund Program application for various planning, design, and construction phase projects for major wastewater treatment plant upgrades and improvement projects.
“I like being able to step in and ease a client’s concerns regarding an application process that many find daunting or that they’ve not had to experience before,” said Cynthia. “It was especially gratifying in Vernon, Connecticut when the Water Pollution Control Director Robert Grasis personally called to offer thanks because they were able to secure the last of the year’s funding. The completeness and thoroughness of the application allowed DEEP to process, review, and approve their request, even ahead of other communities that submitted their applications earlier.”
Working alongside these clients has enabled Cynthia to gain extensive familiarity with the application process and requirements. Coordinating with the client and the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) she has prepared complete application packages consisting of the following:
- Planning, design, and construction-related documents
- Town financial documentation and referendums
- Town-certified and attorney-certified documents
- Breakdown of project costs (overall eligible and grant vs. loan eligible)
- A thorough summary of eligible grant amounts for different funding categories (e.g., nitrogen or phosphorus related improvements compared to all other grant-eligible improvements)
This familiarity and experience with the application process have saved clients time and money by allowing them to meet deadlines required to secure funding from the limited pool available.
“I like that every project can be new and challenging and that I am constantly building on my previous experiences. I learn something new every day and at the same time I improve on what I learned before.”