FRANKFORT, Ky. – Gov. Andy Beshear awarded more than $19.4 million to one county and three water utilities serving Campbell, Kenton and Boone counties. The funding, from the Better Kentucky Plan’s $250 million Cleaner Water Program, will deliver clean drinking water and improved sewer and water systems. The program is estimated to create approximately 3,800 jobs across the state.
The governor awarded a $999,352 Community Development Block Grant to the City of Newport to support its Homeownership Development Housing Project. The city and its partner, nonprofit Newport Millennium Housing Corp., will use these funds to build five new single-family homes and rehabilitate two vacant homes in this community. The new homes will be made available to qualifying low-to-moderate-income households. The city will also offer qualified households a forgivable, 10-year, $20,000 loan.
The Northern Kentucky Area Development District submitted funding requests for 10 Cleaner Water Program projects to the Kentucky Infrastructure Authority. These include wastewater treatment plant improvements, the replacement of aging waterlines, and the installation of new technology.
In Campbell County, the governor presented $1 million to the Northern Kentucky Water District to help replace water mains in downtown Newport, improving service for families and businesses, including at the Ovation development.
Also in Campbell County, Sanitation District #1 of Northern Kentucky received $3.8 million to invest in sewer improvements along US 27 and AA Highway. The project will increase the capacity of both the Centerplex Pump Station and the Cold Springs Crossing Pump Station and redirect flows from Wolpert Pump Station to the Eastern Regional water reclamation facility. Increasing capacity in this area will fuel economic growth and will reduce overflows that occur along Industrial Road and KY-8 in the Highland Heights/Silver Grove area.
For a project in Kenton County, the Northern Kentucky Water District was awarded $1 million to continue improvements at two treatment plants. Aging equipment essential for treating and supplying water to the district’s customers will be replaced at the Fort Thomas treatment plant. The Taylor Mill treatment plant and pumping station will use the funding to provide an emergency backup power source in the event of an electrical outage. These improvements will impact nearly 300,000 people in the Northern Kentucky region.
Sanitation District #1 of Northern Kentucky was awarded $5.1 million to extend sewer service and eliminate failing septic systems in three residential neighborhoods in Kenton County.
Boone County Fiscal Court will use investment of $1.2 million to extend water lines to multiple local neighborhoods and provide safe drinking water to hundreds of unserved rural residents in Western and Southern Boone County.
Boone County Water District will use $1.2 million to provide water service to about 120 previously unserved homes along Kentucky Route 18 near Kelly Elementary School.
Finally, Sanitation District Number #1 of Northern Kentucky will use $6.1 million to fund two phases of the Central Boone County Master Sewer Plan. This project will extend sanitary sewer service in the western portion of the county.
A full list of awarded projects in each county can be found here.
A total of $59 million has been awarded to Cleaner Water Program grantees for transformative projects since the call for projects was announced June 1. There are 713 public drinking water and wastewater utilities in Kentucky.
Cleaner Water program funding is allocated in three ways:
- $150 million based on each county’s proportion of the state’s population, with the exception of Jefferson County’s share, which is discounted by 50% based on its high per capita allocation from the federal act. A list of the allocations by county can be found here.
- $50 million is available for utilities to provide drinking water services to unserved, rural customers or to utilities under a federal consent decree. The KIA shall consider social, economic and environmental benefits in determining the allocations.
- $49.9 million is available to supplement a project grant for a project with a cost in excess of a county’s allocation amount and other available grant sources. The social, economic and environmental benefits shall be considered in determining project allocations. KIA will receive $75,000 to administer the grant program.
The application deadline was Nov. 19, 2021; KIA will make awards throughout the year. All grant awardees must obligate the funds by Dec. 31, 2024.
The American Society of Civil Engineers in 2019 projected that Kentucky faces nearly $14.5 billion in water/wastewater infrastructure needs over the next 20 years, including over $8.2 billion in drinking water upgrades and $6.2 billion in sewer system improvements.
Information about the Cleaner Water Program, as well as grants for broadband expansion, school facility upgrades and vocational education center renovations, can be found at governor.ky.gov/BetterKy.
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