MORGANFIELD, Ky. (Sept. 26, 2012) – Gov. Steve Beshear today joined local officials to announce a grant worth nearly $1 million to design and construct a new inter-connection water line system that will enable the city of Sturgis to purchase treated water from the Union County Water District. The new water line treatment plant consolidation will eliminate the need for the city of Sturgis to rehabilitate or replace their current, outdated water system.
“My administration is always looking for ways to make government more efficient and effective, while maintaining a quality level of services for Kentuckians,” Beshear said. “This water consolidation project is an outstanding example of state and local government working smarter to provide safe and quality water services to residents of Sturgis and Union County.”
The $986,000 Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) will go toward constructing more than 75,000 linear feet of water transmission lines, two pump stations, a new 500,000-gallon water storage tank and the costs of decommissioning the existing plant. Water rates will not increase as a result of this new project.
The city of Sturgis currently operates a water treatment plant that opened in 1978. Since 2004, the city has received 33 Notices of Violations (NOVs) based on unsafe levels of methane and acids found in the water. The NOVs are due in part to the poor quality of the city’s river water source. To continue to use the source, the city would need to install a costly grit removal system and other upgrades. The city’s current water distribution system also suffers a 30 percent water loss and reportedly expends $40,000 per year just on maintenance of their plant.
Rather than rehabilitate or completely replace the outdated water treatment plant, the city of Sturgis will purchase water from the Union County Water District. The Union County Water District purchases water from the water treatment plant in Morganfield, which has the capacity to produce six million gallons per day (MGD) and is currently running at less than 36 percent capacity. This provides adequate space for the city of Sturgis to access water from the Morganfield plant as well.
The Kentucky Infrastructure Authority is also committing $3 million to the project.
“Decommissioning the Sturgis water treatment plant and connecting with the Union County Water District will save the city thousands of dollars over the next several years,” said Department for Local Government Commissioner (DLG) Tony Wilder. “More importantly, as a result of this project the citizens of Sturgis will have reliable access to safe drinking water with no increased cost to their water bill.”
“Quality infrastructure is the foundation for a community to develop and thrive,” said Rep. John Arnold. “This water consolidation project will alleviate the city of Sturgis’ reliability and safety issues with their water infrastructure system without causing any cost burden to taxpayers.”
The state’s CDBG program is administered by DLG and funded through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Kentucky’s Congressional leaders’ ongoing support of the CDBG program ensures the availability of continued funding in Kentucky and nationally.