Rural Infrastructure Authority Approves Grant for Lake Marion Regional Water Agency

Summerville, South Carolina

May 24, 2013 – According to a press release Tuesday from the South Carolina Department
of Commerce, news emerged that the South Carolina Rural Infrastructure
Authority (RIA) recently awarded $5.7 million in grants for 17 water and sewer
projects in 15 counties across the state.
In particular, the Lake Marion Regional Water Agency (LMRWA) will
receive $1,555,600 to complete the LMRWA Reach from Holly Hill to Harleyville
that is located between Dorchester and Orangeburg Counties.

In 2008, once the Lake Marion Regional Water System
Treatment Plant entered service, the LMRWA began work to extend the reach of
the water distribution system to a multi-county region that included Berkeley,
Calhoun, Clarendon, Dorchester, and Orangeburg Counties. In order to maximize the number of water customers
that can be served by Lake Marion, Dorchester County and the LMRWA committed to
the Holly Hill to Harleyville Reach, which is part of the East
Orangeburg-Dorchester-Berkeley Reach.

As one of the final phases remaining in this project, these
grant funds will be utilized by the Agency to complete the Holly Hill to
Harleyville Reach that will connect more residential and commercial customers
to the water system for the lowest cost.
In addition to serving the areas of Holly Hill and Harleyville with
clean, potable water for an estimated $6 million, this phase will also allow
access to the Dorchester County market that is needed for this project to be
fiscally sustainable.  

"This
project has been a long time in the making, and through much perseverance and
dedication we are getting very close to completion," said Dorchester County
Council Chairman Bill Hearn. "We are
thrilled to see nearly two decades of hard work finally coming to fruition. There is still work to be done, but through
the support of the RIA grant, Dorchester County will be able to clear another
major hurdle in its efforts to provide a dependable source of potable water to
attract community and economic development."

Totaling $1.8 million, funding for this portion of the project
that will extend water lines from Holly Hill to Harleyville will be funded
primarily by the Rural Infrastructure Authority for $1,555,600. The remaining $250,000 will be funded by
Dorchester and Orangeburg Counties, with possible financial support from the
Dorchester County Legislative Delegation.

The LMRWA, representing a true partnership between federal,
state, and local entities, has worked tirelessly to address the needs
concerning many communities situated along the I-95 corridor. In addition to the efforts of LMRWA Chairman
John Wright and LMRWA board members, this project has been heavily supported
over the years by Dorchester County Council, Congressman James Clyburn, Senator
Lindsey Graham, Senator John Matthews, and Representative Patsy Knight, as well
as other members of the Dorchester County Legislative Delegation.

The
purpose of the RIA grant awards is to assist rural communities within the state
that need help in bringing their water and sewer systems up to environmental quality
standards of the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control
(SCDHEC). RIA’s support to improve the
capacity of existing systems provides a far-reaching impact statewide to better
serve customers, improve the quality of life, and prepare for economic development.

Secretary
of Commerce Bobby Hitt, who also serves as Chairman of the RIA’s Board of
Directors, elaborated on this significant announcement benefiting South
Carolina’s infrastructure systems. "Basic
infrastructure is a key component not only of economic development, but also of
quality of life. These grants will help
communities provide better water and sewer service for current residents as
well as become more attractive to new residents and businesses."

In
total, the funding awarded by RIA since January comes to more than $9.6
million, which has supported 31 water and sewer infrastructure projects
throughout South Carolina.

Fifty-nine
percent of the projects funded are water system improvements or extensions; the
remaining 41 percent are wastewater projects.
More specifically, some of these projects include extension of water
lines to areas experiencing dry or failing wells that are subject to bacteria
and contamination, upgrades to elevated storage tanks and improvement of
facilities impacted by flooding conditions. 

Funding
for the LMRWA will ensure that over $2.75 million in federal funds are secured
and provide the necessary capacity to support regional economic development
efforts.

The
grants were awarded through a competitive process that focused primarily on
environmental quality standards and public health concerns. Applications were reviewed using several
criteria including severity of the problem, expected benefits, feasibility of
the project, level of effort and readiness to begin construction. A full list of grant recipients is listed
below. 

The purpose of the RIA is to support the construction
and improvement of rural infrastructure through competitive grants and other
financial assistance. The RIA is
governed by a board of directors, and the S.C. Secretary of Commerce serves as
the chairman.

South Carolina Rural Infrastructure Authority List of Funded
Projects (May 2013)

City
of Bennettsville

Residential
Water Lines

$200,000

Town
of Blackville

Waste
Water Treatment Plant

$350,000

Chester
Sewer District

Pump
Station Upgrade

$350,000

Town
of Chesterfield

Elevated
Water Tank Renovations

$315,000

City
of Clinton

Water
Line Upgrade

$150,000

City
of Denmark

Water
Main Replacements

$350,000

Town
of Estill

Pump
Station Upgrade

$350,000

Town
of Greeleyville          

Water
Line Extension

$320,650

Greenwood
Metropolitan District

Sewer
Line Improvement

$500,000

Town
of Hollywood      

Water
Line Extension

$29,000

Lake
Marion Regional Water Agency

Water
Line Extension

$1,555,600

City
of
Lancaster                 

Sewer
System Upgrade

$350,000

Town
of
Norway                 

Waste
Water Treatment Plant Upgrade

$350,000

City
of
Sumter                      

Water
System Improvements

$90,100

Sumter
County                 

Water
Line Extension

$227,194

Town
of
Ulmer                     

Elevated
Water Tank Improvements

$150,000

Williamsburg
County         

Waste
Water Treatment Plant Improvements

$150,000

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