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Kentucky Ag News Headlines
Over $7 Million for Daviess, McLean Tourism, Cleaner Water Projects
Kentucky Ag Connection - 03/30/2023

Wednesday, Lt. Gov. Jacqueline Coleman announced $7,358,374.25 in funding for cleaner water, nonprofit organizations, safer roads and law enforcement in Daviess and McLean counties.

"Investments in our communities through clean water, nonprofits, law enforcement and safe roads provide Kentucky a solid foundation for building tomorrow's economy," Coleman said. "What excites me, as a rural Kentuckian, is that opportunity is coming to all corners of the commonwealth, not just our big cities."

"We appreciate Lt. Gov. Jacqueline Coleman dropping by today," said Daviess County Judge/Executive Charlie Castlen. "These funds will move our community forward and improve the quality of life of our fellow citizens. We appreciate this partnership as we continue working to improve our community."

"The citizens of McLean County will benefit from these projects and this funding for years to come," said McLean County Judge/Executive Curtis Dame. "We want to thank our state and local partners for working with us to make today a reality. Days like today are possible when we work together for a brighter future for our people."

"We rely heavily on local law enforcement, so it is important to ensure they have funds to keep our community safe. The awards announced today make sure that our men and women in law enforcement have access to the resources they need to help those across Daviess County," said Rep. Scott Lewis of Hartford. "I also look forward to how these awards will help fund transportation costs and the Cleaner Water Program. It is crucial Kentuckians have safe infrastructure, which will help improve their livelihoods."

"I am proud to be a part of a legislature that works to allocate funds to programs like these. Helping our law enforcement, funding the Cleaner Water Program and supporting transportation are all important to the safety and outcomes of those in Daviess County," said Rep. Suzanne Miles of Owensboro. "I look forward to how these taxpayer funded investments will help make our community a better and safer place to call home."

"I am sorry I could not be present today as I will be in the legislative session, but I am thankful to Lt. Gov. Coleman for delivering these much-needed funds to McLean County. Small counties like McLean County deserve their fair share of state resources, and I will continue to work to see that they receive them," said Sen. Gary Boswell of Owensboro. "It has been a pleasure to work with Judge Executive Dame and I will continue to work for the citizens of McLean County."

"The money from the Cleaner Water Program will help improve water and sewer systems across our county and give our citizens access to safe and clean water. I look forward to how these funds will benefit our community and how they will ensure better outcomes," said Rep. DJ Johnson of Owensboro. "I also look forward to how today's awards will benefit our local law enforcement and help keep Daviess County safe."

Cleaner Water Program

Coleman announced the commitment of $6.8 million in funding from the Cleaner Water Program. The funding will go toward the following projects:

- Daviess County Fiscal Court will use $2,224,154 to install new hydrants and replace 33,000 feet of waterlines.

- Regional Water Resource Agency will use $1,250,000 to rehabilitate 120 manholes and upgrade pump stations.

- Daviess County Water District will use $1,066,500 to replace waterlines and upgrade a pump station.

- East Daviess County Water Association will use $636,000 to install new waterlines.

- Owensboro Municipal Utilities will use $590,000 for well construction and to replace water mains.

- Whitesville will use $509,000 to upgrade a pump station and replace waterlines.

- North McLean County Water District will use $190,048 to repair water storage tanks.

- McClean County Regional Water Commission will use $150,000 to rehabilitate water storage tanks.

- Sacramento will use $107,358 to replace waterlines.

- Beech Grove Water System will use $62,883 to repaint a water storage tank.

- Island will use $40,646 to replace 479 water meters.

Funded by the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) and administered by the Kentucky Infrastructure Authority, $500 million has been appropriated through a bipartisan agreement with the General Assembly to provide clean drinking water and wastewater grants to fund projects across Kentucky since 2021. The 2022 funding will be allocated based on each county's proportion of the state's population, except for Jefferson County's share, which is discounted by 50% based on its high per capita allocation from the federal act. As projects progress, utilities will be reimbursed.

"Through the work of the legislature and our dedication of ARPA funds towards the Cleaner Water Program, these awards were made possible," said Rep. Jim Gooch of Providence. "With these awards, McLean County will have better access to clean water and will have its roads and nonprofits assisted. Our country is built upon the sustainability of our local communities, and I vow to always take care of and support our state's local community needs."

"This commitment will allow RWRA to move forward with this Environmental project," said Regional Water Resource Agency Executive Director Joe Schepers. "The Williamsburg Square Pump Station and Force Main project will divert approximately 15 million gallons-per-year away from the combined sewer system and into the sanitary sewer system. This redirection will reduce the likelihood of combined sewer system overflows, reduce the bacterial loading contained in the combined sewer system and reduce the bacterial concentration of combined sewer system overflows during wet weather events, improving water quality in the Ohio River. The Williamsburg Square project will make additional diversion projects in the future possible, reducing even more bacterial loading from the combined sewer system and its overflows."

Executive Director Schepers went on to say, "RWRA operates and maintains three deep tunnel systems, all built approximately 100 years ago. In the last century, numerous large and critical buildings have been constructed very close to these aging tunnels. This commitment will allow RWRA to rehabilitate the deep manholes that access the tunnels, helping to ensure these tunnels will stay in service for another 75 years or more without compromising the tunnels and the adjacent structures."

"East Daviess County Water would like to thank Lt. Governor Coleman for the funding, KIA & GRADD for the work they have done on the projects and the former Judge, Al Mattingly, for choosing the Floral Road Extension & the Yelvington-Knottsville Road water main extension, as these are much needed projects in our distribution system," the East Daviess County Water District said in a statement.

"Daviess County Water District is honored and appreciative to receive these grants through the Cleaner Water Program," said Brent Wigginton, general manager of the Daviess County Water District. "These three projects will help improve infrastructure reliability and capacity for the present and future. We would like to thank the Daviess County Fiscal Court, KIA, GRADD and the Governor's Office for their support in receiving these grants."

"As Mayor of Sacramento, I wish to thank the office of the Governor and his staff for allowing us the opportunity to receive funds for a much-needed water line replacement," said Mayor Betty Howard. "This is a major area of the waterline that affects our entire city with breakage. These lines are constructed with very aged steel pipes and lined with corrosion. These funds will allow for replacement in this area and myself and the commission say many thanks to all that have made this possible."

Nonprofit Assistance Fund

Coleman announced $116,979.09 in funding to three McLean County nonprofits from Gov. Beshear's Nonprofit Assistance Fund, which helps organizations across Kentucky recover from the effects of the pandemic. The funding comes from the federal American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), and the Governor supported the allocation of funds by the 2022 General Assembly. This fund will provide one-time direct relief payments to support the mission and long-term sustainability of each eligible nonprofit. The awards include:

- $92,881.13 to the St. Sebastian's Parish of Calhoun;

- $12,509.96 to St. Charles of Livermore; and

- $11,588 to the McLean County Historical & Genealogical Museum.

Transportation Funding

Coleman announced $325,000 in funding to Daviess County from the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet. This funding will be used to resurface Griffith Station Road.

Law Enforcement

Coleman announced $84,806.16 in funding to the City of Owensboro from the Kentucky Office of Homeland Security through the Law Enforcement Protection Program. The funding will be used to purchase body armor, tasers, weapons and ammunition.

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