$1.3 million upgrade coming to the Cumberland water system

Published: Jan. 15, 2021 at 1:26 PM EST
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WASHINGTON, D.C. (WYMT) - On Friday it was announced that the City of Cumberland will receive an Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) grant of $500,000 to go towards new water services in Harlan and Letcher Counties.

They expect the improved water to benefit around 250 households and five businesses.

“New water infrastructure can greatly improve the quality of life in this wonderful region. It can also pave the way for future development and growth. I’m proud the ARC program I established continues to invest in Kentucky families and their bright future,” said Senator McConnell. “With Congressman Rogers, I’ll keep working to deliver for these communities.”

The current water system is said to have experienced leaks and is prone to water line breaks, outages, and contamination.

U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Congressman Hal Rogers also announced additional local funding coming to the Harlan and Letcher Counties in order for these issues to be resolved.

$800,000 will be provided to upgrade the water distribution lines, install two water pump stations, and build a water storage tank.

“Extending and maintaining waterlines in the mountains is no easy feat. It requires partnerships across the federal, state, and local levels, and a lot of funding. However, there’s nothing more important than ensuring our people have access to clean water in every corner of Kentucky’s Appalachian region. This is one of the first major water projects of 2021, and it comes at a critical time for urgent repairs to sustain and expand clean water for the people Harlan and Letcher counties,” said Congressman Rogers, who has worked closely with local leaders on the project. “Senator McConnell and I have always closely guarded funding for the Appalachian Regional Commission, which invests in projects for Eastern Kentucky that would otherwise be stalled. This project has been a long time in the making and this ARC grant is a great way to begin the new year.”

The Cumberland Mayor was extremely thankful for the good news.

“I want to thank everyone involved in securing these ARC funds, especially Senator McConnell and Congressman Rogers for their continued support,” said Cumberland Mayor Charles Raleigh. “The City of Cumberland is appreciative of the grant as it will allow the city to achieve water quality for 200 underserved customers of Cumberland and help provide drinking water to approximately 150 households in Letcher County.”

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