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During Earth Week, USDA Celebrates Critical Infrastructure in Southern Rural Indiana

Nikki Gillespie
Release Date
Apr 22, 2022

Funding Will Help People Access Safe Water for More Than 200 Rural Residents

SPURGEON, Ind., April 22, 2022 – Today, in honor of Earth Day 2022, U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development State Director in Indiana Dr. Terry Goodin, alongside other federal and local officials, visited the Town of Spurgeon to recognize critical infrastructure improvements to strengthen the health and livelihoods of more than 200 rural residents. Improvements include a new wastewater collection system and regionalized connection for wastewater treatment.

“Under the leadership of President Biden and Agriculture Secretary Vilsack, USDA is making it a priority to improve the lives of rural residents by making funding opportunities more equitable, investing in climate-smart infrastructure, and building a better economy,” Dr. Goodin said. “Projects like the one we’re highlighting in Spurgeon today are a great testament to these priorities and the positive impacts they have on our state’s rural communities. We couldn’t be more excited to recognize these efforts in celebration of Earth Day.”

A rural community of approximately 207 residents, the town of Spurgeon and neighboring towns of Petersburg, and Winslow call home in Pike County, Ind. Due to limiting soil conditions, the Pike County Health Department no longer issues permits for septic systems. This limits the ability of the Town to attract new homeowners and businesses and address the existing needs for a new wastewater collection system in the town of Spurgeon.

With help from a $515,000 loan and a $3.834 million grant through USDA’s Water & Waste Disposal Loan and Grant programs, in partnership with the Indiana Finance Authority and the Indiana Office of Community and Rural Affairs, the town of Spurgeon is breaking ground today on a new wastewater collection system. Funding will also be used to purchase collection and capacity from the town of Lynnville, who will provide treatment. The new system will consist of approximately 14,400 lineal feet of force main that will discharge to a new lift station located at the south end of town before being sent to the neighboring town of Lynnville’s wastewater treatment plant. This regional approach will not only help save on costs for the town of Spurgeon, but it will also build on the regional partnerships in the area.

The projects highlighted in today’s visit are a great example of how USDA Rural Development is taking several actions to mitigate the impacts of climate change in rural communities. To learn more about USDA’s Water & Environmental Programs and Community Facilities Programs, please contact the Indiana State Office at (317) 290-3100.

Today’s visit is also part of the Biden-Harris Administration’s Rural Infrastructure Tour, during which Biden Administration officials are traveling to dozens of rural communities to talk about the impact of Bipartisan Infrastructure Law investments, as well as President Biden’s broader commitment to ensure federal resources reach all communities in rural America. To learn more, read about the Infrastructure Implementation Task Force and how USDA and other federal agencies are working with rural communities to deliver on the promise of support for rural America.

Under the Biden-Harris Administration, Rural Development provides loans and grants to help expand economic opportunities, create jobs and improve the quality of life for millions of Americans living in rural areas. This assistance supports infrastructure improvements; business development; housing; community facilities such as schools, public safety and health care; and high-speed internet access in rural, Tribal and high-poverty areas.

To learn more about investment resources for rural areas, interested parties should contact a local Rural Development office or visit www.rd.usda.gov/in. If you’d like to subscribe to USDA Rural Development updates in Indiana, visit our GovDelivery subscriber page