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USDA Invests in Water and Wastewater Infrastructure in 46 States Including Tennessee

Stephen White
Release Date

Assistant to the Secretary for Rural Development Anne Hazlett today announced that USDA is investing $1.2 billion to help rebuild and improve rural water infrastructure for 936,000 rural Americans living in 46 states. Tennessee Rural Development State Director Jim Tracy announced that over $11.5 million will be invested in Tennessee.

   “As part of Rural Development’s commitment to strengthening rural communities, improving water and waste disposal systems is always a top priority,” Tracy said. “Ultimately, these investments will improve the functionality of water systems, which will be more cost effective to run.”  

   USDA is providing financing for 234 water and environmental infrastructure projects through the Water and Waste Disposal Loan and Grant program. The funding can be used for drinking water, stormwater drainage and waste disposal systems for rural communities with 10,000 or fewer residents.      

   Eligible communities and water districts can apply online on the interactive RD Apply tool, or they can apply through one of USDA Rural Development’s state or field offices.

   Below are the projects in Tennessee:

  • The City of Decherd will receive a $2.6 million loan and a $308,000 grant to supplement a $5 million loan and $1.5 million grant previously approved for the construction of the improvements and renovations to the city's wastewater treatment plant. This project anticipates growth from the Nissan Motor Company in Decherd. This growth could lead to overall economic development for residents of Decherd and the surrounding area. The project will directly benefit the current users of the sewer system, which consists of 928 residential and 164 commercial/industrial customers. When the expected Nissan expansion occurs, it will benefit a much larger region. 

  • The Gibson County Municipal Water District in Trenton, will receive a $2.8 million loan and $975,000 grant to construct a new water treatment plant in the Goat City area of the Gibson County Municipal Water District's service area and install Automated Read Meters throughout the system. To keep the existing plant in service and construct a new plant, the most efficient and cost-effective option is to construct the plant and elevated storage tank on the proposed new site located on Annie Russ Road. The plant will be sized to meet current and future demands and to increase the performance of the distribution system. The Gibson County Municipal Water District plans to replace all meters, which have surpassed their useful life, with a new Automated Meter Read System. The replacement will eliminate leaking meters and more accurately record water usages. The improvements will benefit all 3,762 users of the water system

  • The First Utility District of Carter County will receive a $840,000 loan to upgrade the water system which will benefit the more than 7,300 residents. This project consists of short line replacement, short line extensions, the replacement of a pressure reducing valve, upgrades to the electrical supply at the existing water treatment plant, and rehabilitation of the old springhouse as a backup source of raw water.

  • The Warren County Utility District in McMinnville, will receive a $4 million loan to install a new transmission main in the northeastern part of the distribution system. Benefits associated with the proposed transmission main are: the ability to push more water to the most populated portions of the system, redundancy in transmission mains, and increased flow for fire protection. The project will serve an area population of 20,346.

   In addition to Tennessee, USDA is making investments in rural communities in: Alaska, Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Iowa, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, North Carolina, North Dakota, Nebraska, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Vermont, Washington, Wisconsin and West Virginia. 

    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 services such as schools, public safety and health care; and high-speed internet access in rural areas. For more information, visit www.rd.usda.gov.