June 25, 2013

Manchin, Rockefeller, Rahall Announce USDA Funding for Summers County Water and Wastewater Infrastructure

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senators Joe Manchin and Jay Rockefeller, along with Rep. Nick Rahall (all D-W.Va.), Tuesday announced a $345,000 federal grant from USDA Rural Development has been awarded to Big Bend Public Service District to complete the Wiggins and Browning water extension project in Summers County.

"All West Virginians should have access to the basic necessities of life, especially clean water," Manchin said. "These commonsense infrastructure projects are not only incredibly important to the health of our families and our communities, but they are smart investments that attract business and drive economic development. I am pleased that this federal grant will help Summers County complete critical upgrades for Big Bend Public Service District’s water treatment and distribution system."

“Reliable access to clean drinking water and modern wastewater services is critical to the overall health and economic success of our communities,” said Rockefeller. “This funding will help modernize Big Bend Public Service District’s facilities so they can better serve families and businesses in Summers County.”

“I have long supported federal investments in cleaner drinking water and modern wastewater management systems in communities throughout southern West Virginia,” said Rahall, top Democrat on the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee. “These kinds of improvements create jobs during the construction phase, leverage dollars in private-sector investment, and help to ensure a solid foundation for business development.” 

This USDA grant is in addition to $1.8 million in Rural Development funding obligated in 2009 from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) to complete the nearly $2.8 million Wiggins and Browning water extension project that will provide service to approximately 74 additional households and businesses within the communities of Wiggins, Browning, and areas along West Virginia Route 3. Customers in these areas currently rely on wells and springs as their only source of water, which are unreliable during periods of drought and, in the areas adjacent to the Greenbrier River, are susceptible to contamination during flooding. Construction consists of the installation of various size waterlines, a new water storage tank, and upgrades to the existing treatment plant to increase the daily production rate by 1.5 hours.

Big Bend PSD provides public water service to approximately 480 households and small businesses in the communities of Talcott, Hilldale, Pence Springs, and the Willowood Road areas. Including the Big Bend PSD project, Rural Development has invested loans and grants of $3 million for water and wastewater infrastructure projects in Summers County.