PSD project receives $1.5 million grant funding

BUCKHANNON — While the Elkins Road Public Service District project is still very much in the early stages, the water improvement project has received the full Small Cities Block grant with $1.5 million in funding.

Since 2008, Elkins Road PSD representatives have been applying for the Small Cities Block grant. The $6.5 million improvement project was awarded the grant’s full amount in February, and officials now need to apply for a USDA Rural Development loan for the remaining $5 million.

“We could not apply for the loan until we have gotten all of the $1.5 million Small Cities Block grant,” explained Carolyn Douglas, Elkins Road PSD office manager. “We got $283,434 last year, and then in February they awarded us the balance of $1,216,566, which completed the Small Cities Block grant.”

The goal of the project is to extend water to areas that don’t currently have water, which make up of nine roadways, affecting 88 households.

Once completed, the water extension project will provide water for customers in Kedron Road/Audra Road/Braddock Lane; Radabaugh Ridge/Hand Camp Road; Beech Run; Hawkins Road; Upper Childers Run; Wolfe Ridge; Fortney/Snyder Road; Jackson Road/Winery Road; and Osborne Run Road.

The current customers are either having water brought to them or receive water through a well.

“Some of them will have a truck that comes in and fills up their cisterns, and others just have wells that sometimes have water and sometimes don’t,” said Douglas. “It’s really bad.”

Douglas, who lives on Hawkins Road — one of the affected areas, said some customers need to have truckloads of water brought in to fill up their wells.

“During the summer months when it’s hot, oh yeah, it’s been really bad,” she said. “So we’re hoping to fix all that.”

Included in the project will be reservicing two older water tanks, a possible new office building and placing generators at each pump station.

“When we have these bad storms, the generator will already be in place and we won’t have to have somebody bring them in,” Douglas noted.

She said the project is scheduled to begin in 2019.