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November 04, 2008
Supervisors deliver assurance that Phase 2 sewer is moving forward
WESTMORELAND COUNTY, Virginia (STPNS) -- This Monday night the Westmoreland Supervisors reassured prospective Phase 2 Washington District sewer customers that their project will go forward and that the money to build the collection infrastructure is in hand.
County Administrator Norm Risavi was assisted during the session by Carrie Schmidt, the community Programs Director, who works from U.S. Department of Agriculture/Rural Development?s Richmond office and by Charlie Riedlinger, the Resource International project engineer.
Phase 2 project customers who paid their $3,000 connection fee with the expectation that construction would begin no later than Spring 2008 have now been told that work will begin soon after a suitable vacuum/pump station site can purchased by the county government.
According to the projected time-line, the project will take approximately eighteen months to complete and will cost $9,983,500. Developer Rich Ward?s proffered $3 million contribution to the project had been deleted from the Phase 2 sewer system?s construction budget.
Risavi told the people that housing market conditions adversely affected the developer?s ability to make the promised contribution, but that the local government had been successful in obtaining additional financing from Rural Development.
?The developer?s contribution is no longer applicable to this project,? he explained.
The County Administrator advised that Washington District Elementary School and several new Oak Grove area customers have been added to the project whose previously contemplated bottom line had been $9,070,800.
The developer?s inability to deliver was offset by Rural Development?s allocation of an additional $1.5 million grant and a $1.5 million loan derived from Congress?s Farm Bill.
According to Risavi, the connection fees collected from prospective customers has earned as much as $90,000 in interest.
Revenue to support the project consists of an initial Rural Development loan in the amount of $3,003,000, a $1,013,800 Rural Development grant, a subsequent $1,500,000 Rural Development grant, a second Rural Development loan in the amount of $1,500,000, a $562,000 contribution from Westmoreland County and connection fees now totaling $2,404,700.
Engineer Riedlinger characterized the engineering work as being nearly complete.
?We?re eighty to ninety percent finished with the design,? he told the people, explaining further that the rest of the engineering cannot be done until the vacuum station site has been identified.
Riedlinger projected a twelve-month construction schedule that would follow the six-month interval in which designs would be completed and approved. Next Tuesday the Placid Bay property owners? association will contemplate the sale of a prospective vacuum station site to the county government. Phase 2 customers were told that an affirmative determination on Tuesday would expedite completion of the project.
Citizens had a chance to ask questions and also share concerns. During the discussion, District 4 Supervisor Woody Hynson provided additional assurances that the project will proceed.
?Anyone who knows me knows that I always keep an extra shell in my back pocket,? the long-time Supervisor stated. ?I?ve talked to other people about lots [for the vacuum station site]. I want the deal with Placid Bay to go through, but I do have other places to go.?
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