Gov. Beshear awards millions for clean water projects, non-profits

Published: Jan. 24, 2023 at 2:25 PM EST
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PIKEVILLE, Ky. (WSAZ) - Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear spent the morning in Pike County, announcing millions of dollars to expand access to clean water and support for non-profit organizations.

“Clean drinking water is a basic human right, but in 2023 we still have thousands of Kentucky families that don’t have access, that can’t turn on the tap and know it’s going to be there,” Beshear said.

The governor awarded $3.5 million to communities in Pike County in Cleaner Water Program funds.

“It’s critical that we keep coming back and that we not only provide the resources to lift people up who’ve been knocked down but help us move forward,” Beshear said.

Elkhorn City will receive $82,536 to improve the wastewater collection system and $303,597 to built a new water main for 350 homes.

“We have a lot of sewer lines that are messed up, and I know every county does,” said Elkhorn City Mayor Michael Taylor. “We have lines that are broke. We’ve had cameras going into them all the time, and I appreciate this.”

The Mountain Water District will receive $1,926,262 to replace leak-prone waterlines.

“We’ve not had the funds to repair those lines the way they should be so our water loss percentage has been running in the 30%. The PSC wants it at 15%,” said Johnny Denison, the chairman of the Mountain Water board. “We can reduce our water loss percentage and then in turn it would reduce the cost for our rate payers.”

Another $313,000 will go toward installing a waterline to provide water to four unserved homes in the Peach Orchard area.

“It will be huge for those people,” Denison said.

The town of Pikeville will be receiving $624,915 to extend sewer service to an area of the Cedar Creek Subdivision.

“We didn’t realize for years and years that a very nice subdivision that’s on a hillside needs sewer service. They’ve been using septic tanks for years and years,” said Pikeville Mayor James Carter.

Pikeville will also receive $313,520 to upgrade the water treatment plant.

“Being the biggest water producer in the county, this is huge to continue to be able to push water out to the people in the county and our bigger customers like the hospital and the university,” Carter said.

The governor also presented six awards totaling more than $330,000 for non-profit organizations to help them recover from the effects of the pandemic.

“Organizations including the Salvation Army that help people in need every single day they deserve our support. They deserve recognition they’re wonderful people,” Beshear said.

These include:

  • $2,993 for Helping Hands of Phelps.
  • $100,000 for Appalachian Hospice Care.
  • $100,000 for the City of Pikeville Exposition Center.
  • $17,789.38 for Judi’s Place for Kids.
  • $100,000 for the Pikeville Area Family YMCA.
  • $9,291.11 for The Salvation Army of Pike County.