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Ahead of Earth Day, USDA Rural Development Announces $4 Million White Stone Wastewater Project

Eric Peters
White Stone
Release Date

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Rural Development office in Virginia, along with state and nonprofit officials, announced today more than $4 million in wastewater infrastructure funding that will address environmental, economic and health concerns close to the Chesapeake Bay.

In the town of White Stone, residents and businesses currently depend on outdated, on-site septic systems, some of which have failed and often allow raw sewage to seep above ground and into various local waterways. Funds announced today will be used to construct a wastewater treatment plant and sewer collection system that will reduce the associated health and environmental concerns.

White Stone officials have said they also expect the system to be a major step in attracting residents, businesses and overall economic growth.

“Outdated or nonexistent public sewer systems are unhealthy for people and the environment, which is a reason we work every day with Virginia localities to find solutions to water infrastructure and other challenges,” said USDA Rural Development’s Virginia State Director, Basil Gooden, Ph.D. “These solutions create ripple effects that improve the economy, quality of life and environment in rural Virginia, and we’re pleased to be able to partner with state, local and nonprofit organizations to make these improvements a reality.”

Along with USDA Rural Development, the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development, the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality and the Southeast Rural Community Assistance Project all are contributing to the project

Funding details are as follows

  • USDA Rural Development - loan: $807,000; grant: $1,958,000

  • Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development – grant: $455,000

  • Virginia Department of Environmental Quality – loan: $750,000

  • Southeast Rural Community Assistance Project – grant: $110,000

White Stone’s wastewater treatment plant will have a 40,000 gallon-per-day capacity and the collection system will include approximately 13,800 linear feet of force main piping. The completed system, which is phase one of a two-phase sewer plan in the town, will provide approximately 129 residential connections and 38 businesses or mixed-use buildings with safe, sanitary sewer access. Phase two will reach the remainder of the town.

The $2.7 million in USDA Rural Development funding announced in White Stone is part of more than $4 million the agency announced this week across Virginia (the other Virginia investment is $1.4 million in Stuart) and part of $183 million announced nationwide from the agency’s Water and Environmental Program (WEP). The program provides technical assistance and financing to develop drinking water and waste disposal systems for communities with fewer than 10,000 residents.

Construction in White Stone is expected to begin in summer of 2017.

Editor’s note: For the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development, media may contact Amanda Pearson at (804) 840-0129 or amanda.pearson@dhcd.virginia.gov. For the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality, media may contact Bill Hayden at (804)698-4447 or william.hayden@deq.virginia.gov. For the Southeast Rural Community Assistance Project, media may contact Hope Cupit at (540)345-1184 or hcupit@sercap.org.

USDA Rural Development in 2015 invested more than $1 billion in rural Virginia through 40 loan, grant and loan guarantee programs in housing, business, agriculture, energy, health care and community facilities. It has employees stationed in 14 offices across the commonwealth to better serve residents where they live and to improve the economy and quality of life in rural Virginia.