Gov. Beshear Presents $1.7 Million to Improve Infrastructure in Butler, Ohio Counties
Funds will be used to update water systems, improve roads, upgrade park facilities and build new fire station
HARTFORD, Ky. (Aug. 17, 2022) – Today, in keeping with his priorities to promote safety and health in the commonwealth, Gov. Andy Beshear presented $1,711,079 in awards to Ohio and Butler counties that will fund water system improvements, park upgrades, road resurfacing and a new fire station.
“Companies across the world are betting on Kentucky. Now is the time to invest in our infrastructure, our people and our future,” Gov. Beshear said. “That’s why the awards for these projects couldn’t come at a better time.”
Butler County Water System
Gov. Beshear announced $350,962 to the Butler County Water System Inc. This funding will allow for the design and construction of 55,900 feet of waterline. The new lines will replace small diameter distribution lines. At least 100 Kentuckians will receive increased water pressure, flow and service reliability as a result of this project.
The funding comes from the Cleaner Water Program, part of Gov. Beshear’s Better Kentucky Plan, which is expanding access to high-speed internet, improving infrastructure and delivering clean drinking water and quality sewer systems across Kentucky.
“Aging and inadequate water infrastructure is one of the greatest challenges facing our commonwealth today,” Rep. Melinda Gibbons Prunty of Belton said. “I’m proud of the fact we chose to invest federal funds in addressing this issue, particularly because the dollars will reach every county. I’m also thankful that Butler County and Morgantown have worked with the Governor’s Office and the Department for Local Government to identify and approve this project.”
“The approved funding will go toward installing over 55,000 feet of waterline in Butler County,” Butler County Judge/Executive Tim Flener said. “One hundred residents in Butler County will have improved service because of this project, and the new waterlines will help families here for years to come.”
City of Morgantown
The Governor awarded the City of Morgantown $750,000 in Community Block Development Grant funding to help construct a new fire station on Industrial Drive South. The new facility will include five bays, a kitchen, a large meeting/training room, an office, restrooms and a storage room for equipment. The fire department serves approximately 2,066 households within the city and adjacent unincorporated areas.
The current fire station is too small to meet the department’s needs. The new station will provide more space for the firefighters, improving efficiency and cutting down on response times. The city owns the property for the new station, and the Morgantown Volunteer Fire Department will own and maintain the new facility.
“The new fire station will be bigger and more functional for the needs of our fire department,” Morgantown Mayor Billy Phelps said. “The new facility will help us to better serve the over 2,000 households in our fire department’s service area.”
Gov. Beshear also announced $122,033 for improvements to the Morgantown water distribution system from the Cleaner Water Program. This project will replace 72 gate valves and construct 10 hydrants. The funding will provide a significant upgrade to the aging water infrastructure of the city. Without working valves, the entire system must be shut down when a water line break occurs. This project will increase service reliability for Morgantown.
“The Cleaner Water funds are going to upgrade our water distribution system,” Randell Gaskey, superintendent of Utilities in Morgantown, said. “Many of the valves currently in use are very old, and when a water line breaks, we have to shut down the entire system. These upgrades will improve reliability for Morgantown.”
City of Beaver Dam
The Governor announced that the City of Beaver Dam is receiving a $88,084 Land & Water Conservation Fund grant. This funding will go toward applying an asphalt overlay to the existing parking area and driving lanes at the Beaver Dam City Park. It will also go toward laying pavement for a second parking area that will fit almost 400 designated parking spots, including two that are ADA-accessible.
“The Beaver Dam City Park is going to see significant upgrades as a result of this funding,” Beaver Dam Mayor Paul Sandefur said. “We are planning major renovations to our current parking areas and drives. This is going to help more people enjoy our park, especially the elderly and users with mobility issues and other disabilities. We are very grateful for this funding.”
Gov. Beshear also awarded $400,000 in discretionary funding to the Ohio County Fiscal Court to support the resurfacing and extension of Old Liberty Church Road within Bluegrass Crossings Regional Business Park at Beaver Dam. The extension will serve a proposed $17 million distillery project that would have 30 employees.
“This is wonderful news for Ohio County. It’s going to allow us to recruit a large business – a distillery – and it’s going to improve the economy of our county. I appreciate the Governor so much on this,” Ohio County Judge/Executive David Johnston said.
About the Cleaner Water Program
Funded by the American Rescue Plan Act and administered by the Kentucky Infrastructure Authority, $500 million has been appropriated through a bipartisan agreement with the General Assembly to provide clean drinking water and wastewater grants to fund projects across Kentucky since 2021.
About the Community Development Block Grant Program
The CDBG program provides annual grants on a formula basis to states, cities and counties to develop viable urban communities by providing decent housing and a suitable living environment, and by expanding economic opportunities.
About the Land and Water Conservation Fund
The LWCF provides federal grant funds to protect important natural areas, to acquire land for outdoor recreation and to develop or renovate public outdoor recreation facilities such as campgrounds, picnic areas, sports and playfields, swimming facilities, boating facilities, fishing facilities, trails, natural areas and passive parks. To receive the federal funds, which are administered at the state level by the Department for Local Government, selected applicants must undergo federal review and receive approval from the National Park Service.