U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) State Director Michael Dora announced USDA is investing $30,981,500 million for six projects in rural communities in Indiana. Funded by the Water and Waste Disposal Loan and Grant program, these investments will improve water systems and wastewater handling services in rural communities in Indiana.
“These project renovations will improve public and environmental health concerns for over 12,000 rural residents,” Michael Dora said. Eligible applicants include rural cities, towns and water districts. The funds can be used for drinking water, stormwater drainage and waste disposal systems in rural communities that meet population limits.
- The town of Henryville in Southern Ind. will use $4,917,000 loan to upgrade their Henryville Membership Sanitation Corporation facility. This Rural Development investment will be used to renovate and expand the existing wastewater treatment plant. This includes a new oxidation ditch, new clarifier, new splitter box and screening building, upgrade of the ultraviolet system, replacement of the station pumps, elimination of the scum lift station, expansion of the digester system, new sludge processing equipment, addition of dissolved oxygen probes to existing oxidation ditch, relocation of the existing screen to the new splitter box and rerouting of the existing plant access road. This will benefit the service area of 4,026 residents in rural Clark County, Ind.
- The town of Knightstown in East Central Ind. was granted a $1,607,000 loan to provide additional assistance to install new head works pump station and screening operations, place pump station flow meter in line for accurate monitoring of flow to the plant, rehab the existing aeration basins to include series feed system and installation of a mixing system in the first two tanks, remove existing screening system and relocate aeration system to the screening room as the screen will be relocate to the head works, rehab all aeration within the basin including the digester, convert the blower house in a new motor control building to include all electrical and motor controls, install new 40-foot diameter clarifier and rehabilitate existing clarifier, install new UV system, rehabilitate the three lift stations and re-route force main from Park lift station to Maple Drive, install new gravity line along CR 775 W south from South Drive to County Line Road, rehab and line in place 3,425 lineal feet of portions of Madison and Washington Streets collection lines. This will benefit 2,182 residents in rural Henry County, Ind. Previously, a $5,226,000 direct loan was obligated to this project by Rural Development.
- The town of Oaktown in Southwest Ind. was granted a $475,000 loan to upgrade the town's existing drainage systems with new storm sewer, inlets, ditches and associated appurtenances in several of the critical areas. The new storm water drainage facilities will increase storm water runoff capture and more efficiently convey storm water to appropriate outlets. The new systems will decrease ponding and flooding from rain events as currently experienced by the town's 608 residents in rural Knox County, Ind.
- The city of Cannelton in Southern Ind. is granted a $2,462,000 loan and $6,809,000 grant to assist the town of Cannelton in replacing over 3,300 feet of sewer utilizing conventional open cut construction methods for the city's 1,563 residents in rural Perry County, Ind. The work project also includes the rehabilitation of about 2,700 feet of sewer utilizing cured-in-place pipe lining. A new lift station and wastewater treatment plant will be constructed.
- The city of Petersburg in Southern, Ind. is granted a $4,615,000 and $7,553,000 grant to renovate and improve the existing wastewater utility for the city of Petersburg, Ind. The project will consist of adding two new trickling filters to the existing wastewater treatment plant. The plant will also replace two clarifiers as part of this project and add a new transfer lift station at the plant. A new equalization basin/lagoon will be built on the site. A new solar array field will be added to the site to offset power purchases. Some targeted upgrades to the collections system will be part of the project. The Petersburg Wastewater Utility service area currently includes the city of Petersburg as well as up to 80 rural customers residing in Washington Township where feasible to provide service. A total of 3,198 residents of rural Pike County, Ind. will benefit from this project.
- The town of Newport in East Central Ind. is receiving a $1,041,000 loan and $1,502,500 grant to address current needs and prevent future public and environmental health concerns due to unsafe drinking water distribution and treatment. The project is necessary to provide safe, environmentally friendly and reliable drinking water for the town of Newport's 515 residents in rural Vermillion County, Ind. A result of a Rural Development preplanning grant, the projects consists of well replacements and upgrades, meter head replacements, and replacement of a ground storage tank along with other upgrades.
Today’s announcement came as part of a larger statement from USDA Deputy Under Secretary for Rural Development Donald “D.J.” LaVoy investing $635 million in 122 projects to improve water systems and wastewater handling services in rural communities in 42 states.
“This funding brings modern, reliable infrastructure to rural communities. It replaces old, fragile, leaking water pipes with new ones, and allows upgrades to water handling systems that are decades old, boosting water pressure and cutting water losses. Working with our partners, these investments create jobs and improves public health and safety,” LaVoy said. “Under the leadership of President Trump and Agriculture Secretary Perdue, USDA is committed to partnering with rural communities to help them improve their infrastructure, because when rural America thrives, all of America thrives.”
In April 2017, President Donald J. Trump established the Interagency Task Force on Agriculture and Rural Prosperity to identify legislative, regulatory and policy changes that could promote agriculture and prosperity in rural communities. In January 2018, Secretary Perdue presented the Task Force’s findings to President Trump. These findings included 31 recommendations to align the federal government with state, local and tribal governments to take advantage of opportunities that exist in rural America. Increasing investments in rural infrastructure is a key recommendation of the task force.
To view the report in its entirety, please view the Report to the President of the United States from the Task Force on Agriculture and Rural Prosperity (PDF, 5.4 MB). In addition, to view the categories of the recommendations, please view the Rural Prosperity infographic (PDF, 190 KB).
USDA Rural Development provides loans and grants to help expand economic opportunities and create jobs 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 areas. For more information, visit www.rd.usda.gov.