$525K will help utility ease thirst for repairs

Published 9:43 am Monday, September 8, 2014

Repairs needed by a local utility are a step closer to becoming a reality thanks to a state grant for more than a half-million dollars.
Carter County has been selected to receive a Community Development Block Grant from the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development for $525,000. The grant will be contracted between the state and the Watauga River Regional Water Authority.
Bryon Trantham, director of the WRRWA, said the grant was issued to the county “line rehabilitation and infrastructure upkeep” for the North Elizabethton Co-Op. He said the Co-Op will use the grant money to replace aging water lines – some of which are 50 to 60 years old he said – as well as to install pressure reducers.
The North Elizabethton Co-Op will have to supply $33,510 in grant matching funds.
According to Trantham, the North Elizabethton Co-Op was selected by the state to receive the grant because the utility serves a large number of low- to middle-income level customers and has suffered a high water loss rate. “It was at 50 percent when the study was done,” Trantham said.
Trantham said the WRRWA is “just tickled” to receive the grant because the line replacement is a much-needed infrastructure improvement for the utility.
Before work can begin on the project, an environmental review and an engineering design will have to be completed. Trantham said both must be sent to the state for approval.

Subscribe to our free email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox