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MEDIA CONTACT: Dina Pierce
CITIZEN CONTACT: Darla Peelle
Brown County Rural Water Extending Service to Aberdeen, Assisted by Funding from Ohio EPA
The Brown County Rural Water Association (BCRWA) is extending drinking water service to the Village of Aberdeen. Most of the project is being financed by a low-interest loan from Ohio EPA. The project will improve drinking water service to the village, which voted to turn over ownership of its existing, local water system to BCRWA in May 2014.
This project will involve construction of new water lines to connect Aberdeen to the BCRWA system, a new water storage tank and other equipment to provide water to the village. In addition, Aberdeen’s existing wells will be plugged and two existing water towers will be removed. BCRWA also will pay off the village’s existing debt service. Construction is expected to be completed in February 2016.
Aberdeen’s drinking water treatment and distribution system has serious deficiencies, including frequent depressurizations, an inadequate supply of raw water from its wells and an inadequate process for treatment, distribution and storage of water.
Created in 1998, the Water Supply Revolving Loan Account (WSRLA) provides below-market interest rate loans for compliance-related improvements for community water systems and non-profit, non-community public water systems. In this case, the full loan is for $3,514,398 of the total $3,864,398 total project cost, with BCRWA directly paying the remaining $350,000. The WSRLA financing will save the system an estimated $728,000 compared to a conventional market-rate loan.
Projects eligible for WSRLA funding include design and construction loans for new, replaced, rehabilitated, upgraded or expanded water treatment plants and their components. In addition, the WSRLA can provide technical assistance to public drinking water systems in a variety of areas from the planning, design and construction of improvements to enhancing the technical, managerial and financial capacity of these systems.
Ohio EPA’s revolving loan funds are partially supported by federal grants and designed to last indefinitely through repayment of loans and investments in bonds. The WSRLA is managed jointly by Ohio EPA’s Division of Environmental and Financial Assistance and Division of Drinking and Ground Waters, with assistance from the Ohio Water Development Authority. Ohio EPA is responsible for program development and implementation, individual project coordination, and environmental and other technical reviews/approvals of projects seeking funds. The Ohio Water Development Authority provides financial management of the fund.
More information about the WSRLA is available at: epa.ohio.gov/defa/EnvironmentalandFinancialAssistance.aspx.
The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency was created in 1972 to consolidate efforts to protect and improve air quality, water quality and waste management in Ohio. Since then, air pollutants dropped by as much as 90 percent; large rivers meeting standards improved from 21 percent to 89 percent; and hundreds of polluting, open dumps were replaced with engineered landfills and an increased emphasis on waste reduction and recycling.