Kentucky Governor Awards $19.4 Million to Counties

Gov. Beshear Awards $19.4 Million to Campbell, Kenton and Boone Counties through Cleaner Water Program

Governor also presents nearly $1 million for Newport Homeownership Development Housing Project

Frankfort, KY (STL.News) Gov. Andy Beshear awarded more than $19.4 million to one county and three water utilities serving Campbell, Kenton and Boone counties.  The funding, from the Better Kentucky Plan’s $250 million Cleaner Water Program, will deliver clean drinking water and improved sewer and water systems.  The program is estimated to create approximately 3,800 jobs across the state.

“Our Northern Kentucky region is a hub for economic growth,” said Gov. Beshear.  “We’re proud to work with each of you to address needed infrastructure improvements that will bring safer, more reliable sanitary sewer services and clean, healthy drinking water to thousands of residents and area businesses.”

The Governor also awarded a $999,352 Community Development Block Grant to the City of Newport to support its Homeownership Development Housing Project.  The city and its partner, nonprofit Newport Millennium Housing Corporation, will use these funds to build five new single-family homes and rehabilitate two vacant homes in this community.  The new homes will be made available to qualifying low-to moderate-income households.  The city will also offer qualified households a forgivable, 10-year, $20,000 loan.

The Northern Kentucky Area Development District submitted funding requests for 10 Cleaner Water Program projects to the Kentucky Infrastructure Authority.  These include wastewater treatment plant improvements, the replacement of aging waterlines, and the installation of new technology.

In Campbell County, the Governor presented $1 million to the Northern Kentucky Water District to help replace water mains throughout much of downtown Newport, improving service for families and businesses, including at the Ovation development downtown.

“The Northern Kentucky Water District would like to extend a sincere thank you to Governor Beshear and the General Assembly for making such an important investment in the Northern Kentucky community with two Cleaner Water Grants that will positively impact both Kenton and Campbell counties,” said Ron Lovan, President/CEO of the Northern Kentucky Water District.  “We would also like to thank the KIA, the Kenton County Fiscal Court, the Campbell County Fiscal Court and the Northern Kentucky Area Development District for their partnership in ensuring the water needs of our region are met.”

Also in Campbell County, Sanitation District #1 of Northern Kentucky received $3,786,970 to invest in sewer improvements along US-27 and the AA Highway.  The project will increase the capacity of both the Centerplex Pump Station and the Cold Springs Crossing Pump Station and will redirect flows from Wolpert Pump Station to the Eastern Regional water reclamation facility.  Increasing capacity in this area will fuel economic growth and will reduce overflows that occur along Industrial Road and KY-8 in the Highland Heights/Silver Grove area.

“SD1 is proud to receive funding through Kentucky’s Cleaner Water Program for important sewer improvement projects across our region,” said Adam Chaney, SD1 executive director.  “The funds will be used to advance projects that will protect public health, property and the environment and support the economic vitality of our community.  We thank Gov. Beshear and Kentucky’s lawmakers for recognizing the importance of these projects and providing this critical investment in Northern Kentucky’s infrastructure.  We would also like to thank the three county judges executive and fiscal courts along with other contributing local representatives and officials.  Without a coordinated, comprehensive approach to project prioritization across our region, these awards would not have been possible.”

“I’m appreciative of today’s announcement,” said Sen. Wil Schroder, whose district includes Campbell County.  “Seeing local real-world benefits is rewarding and shows we did the right thing on behalf of Kentucky residents.  There was bipartisan agreement among co-equal branches of government to allocate funding toward needs like this.  I want to thank local leaders who will see it through to its end.”

“Most of us don’t think much about water service, and we shouldn’t have to thanks to projects like these,” said Rep. Rachel Roberts, who represents part of Campbell County.  “They’re the kind I fight for as state representative so that our community continues to grow and citizens get the uninterrupted services they have come to expect and deserve.  These particular infrastructure projects will replace lines prone to breaking while reducing water leakage and increasing capacity and flow.  This will also contribute to better fire suppression and safety for future projects along our riverfront, from Newport to Silver Grove and up into Highland Heights.”

“While the legislature has had a plate full of priorities, we have managed to keep funding for infrastructure improvements such as the Cleaner Water Project on the main stage,” said Rep. Joe Fischer, who represents the 68th House District in Campbell County.  “I look forward to seeing the much needed updates that will be brought forth as a result of the work done by my colleagues and me in the General Assembly.  I thank the Governor and his administration for the opportunity to share this news with Campbell County and to celebrate this announcement.”

“The federal relief funds that my colleagues and I have fought to attain will create generational impacts for not only my district, but also for constituents around the commonwealth,” said Rep. Kim Moser, who represents portions of both Campbell and Kenton counties.  “I look forward to seeing the vital infrastructure updates in our district.  I would like to thank the governor’s administration for the opportunity to share this incredible news with the people of my district.”

“The Campbell County Fiscal Court wants to thank the Governor and the General Assembly for this significant investment in clean water projects in Campbell County,” said Campbell County Judge/Executive Steve Pendery.  “When the KIA announced the call for projects we submitted several opportunities that would benefit the environment, replace aging infrastructure, provide for economic growth and serve our unserved residents.  Replacing aging water mains in Newport and increasing sewer capacity in the US 27/AA Highway corridor are big wins for our county.”

For a project in Kenton County, the Northern Kentucky Water District was awarded $1 million to continue improvements at two treatment plants.  Aging equipment essential for treating and supplying water to the district’s customers will be replaced at the Fort Thomas treatment plant.  The Taylor Mill treatment plant and pumping station will use the funding to provide an emergency backup power source in the event of an electrical outage.  These improvements will impact nearly 300,000 people in the Northern Kentucky region.

The Sanitation District #1 of Northern Kentucky was awarded $5,133,176 to extend sewer service and eliminate failing septic systems in three residential neighborhoods in Kenton County.

“As Kentucky Senate Majority Floor Leader, I was proud of the General Assembly’s responsible allocation of taxpayer dollars that came to Kentucky through the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021,” said Sen. Damon Thayer whose district includes part of Kenton County.  “One-time investments to bring clean and reliable water to Kentuckians and improve infrastructure are examples of common sense and agreeable uses of these dollars.  Such investments directly benefit communities across the Bluegrass and don’t saddle taxpayers with reoccurring expenses for years to come.  This type of allocation of funds ultimately saves money in the long term.  I thank everyone who has made today’s announcement possible and look forward to more like this in the future.”

“Every single dollar in the care of state and federal government should be considered labor expended by a taxpayer.  That means for that dollar to be available, a working taxpayer put forth an effort to make it possible,” said Sen. Chris McDaniel, whose district includes part of Kenton County.  “When precious taxpayer dollars are given that consideration, it makes quality investments like this, on their behalf, all the more rewarding.”

“This funding comes at an ideal time, and it will be a huge benefit for those families and businesses that directly benefit,” said Rep. Buddy Wheatley, who represents part of Kenton County.  “I want to thank Governor Beshear for traveling here to deliver this news personally.  I’ve been proud to work with him and my fellow legislators to make infrastructure improvements like these, because the need is certainly there.  The flurry of activity we’re seeing right now across Kentucky and the country will have a positive impact for decades to come.”

“It is a pleasure to announce such a wonderful infrastructural opportunity for our district,” said Rep. Kim Banta, who represents portions of both Boone and Kenton counties.  “Access to clean drinking water is not something the people of Kentucky should be concerned with, as they should already have it.  I am excited to see these important updates come to fruition, and I appreciate the opportunity to share such exciting news with you.”

The Boone County Fiscal Court will use an investment of $1,226,476 to extend water lines to multiple local neighborhoods and provide safe drinking water to hundreds of unserved rural residents in Western and Southern Boone County.

The Boone County Water District will use $1,226,475 to provide water service to about 120 previously unserved homes along Kentucky Route 18 near Kelly Elementary School.

Finally, the Sanitation District Number #1 of Northern Kentucky will use $6,102,951 to fund two phases of the Central Boone County Master Sewer Plan.  This project will extend sanitary sewer service in the western portion of the county.

“I’m happy with this great news for Boone County and want to thank those locally who will see this project through to its end,” said Sen. John Schickel, who represents Boone County.  “The people of Northern Kentucky deserve all the best, and I’m excited to see the good today’s announcement will do for residents here in Boone County.”

“Federal relief funding can be considered a silver lining from the COVID-19 pandemic.  This money that was granted to our state has many potential uses, but there are none better than using this funding to better the lives of those who are forced to deal with failing infrastructure on a daily basis,” said Rep. Adam Koenig, who represents portions of both Boone and Kenton counties.  “I look forward to seeing the generational impacts these projects will surely bring to my district.”

Rep. Ed Massey, who represents a portion of Boone County, said: “Our waste and drinking water infrastructure is in dire need of an overhaul, and it is exciting to see projects of this variety come to life as a result of the legislature’s hard work.”

“It goes without saying that COVID-19 has been a trying time for the world, the country, and especially the commonwealth.  While we count our blessings, we must not forget to recognize the federal relief dollars the legislature has been able to secure for projects of this variety,” said Rep. Sal Santoro, who represents a portion of Boone County. “While there are several ways this money could have been spent, the legislature has taken the utility infrastructure of the Commonwealth as a priority.  I am excited to see these projects come to Boone County, and I look forward to witnessing the generational impacts they will have.”

“Today’s announcements of nearly $9 million in our infrastructure of water and sewer will improve the health and safety of hundreds of residents here in Boone County.  We are grateful for the bipartisan efforts at the state and federal levels that made this happen,” said Boone County Judge/Executive Gary Moore.

Today’s announcements of nearly $9 million in our infrastructure of water and sewer will improve the health and safety of hundreds of residents here in Boone County.  We are grateful for the bipartisan efforts at the state and federal levels that made this happen, said Boone County Judge Executive Gary Moore

About the Cleaner Water Program

A total of $59 million has been awarded to grantees to fund transformative projects since the call for projects was announced June 1.  Eligible government agencies, such as city-owned water or sewer utilities, water commissions, water and sewer districts and counties, collaborated with their local Area Development Districts (ADD) and Area Water Management Councils to submit projects for Cleaner Water Program funding.  There are 713 public drinking water and wastewater utilities in Kentucky.

Cleaner Water program funding is allocated in three ways:

  • $150 million based on each county’s proportion of the state’s population, with the exception of Jefferson County’s share, which is discounted by 50% based on its high per capita allocation from the federal act.  A list of the allocations by county can be found here.
  • $50 million is available for utilities to provide drinking water services to unserved, rural customers or to utilities under a federal consent decree.  The KIA shall consider social, economic and environmental benefits in determining the allocations.
  • $49.9 million is available to supplement a project grant for a project with a cost in excess of a county’s allocation amount and other available grant sources.  The social, economic and environmental benefits shall be considered in determining project allocations.  KIA will receive $75,000 to administer the grant program.

The application deadline was Nov. 19, 2021; however KIA will make awards continuously throughout the year.  All grant awardees must obligate the funds by Dec. 31, 2024.

The American Society of Civil Engineers in 2019 projected that Kentucky faces nearly $14.5 billion in water/wastewater infrastructure needs over the next 20 years, including over $8.2 billion in drinking water upgrades and $6.2 billion in sewer system improvements.