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Leesville, USDA announce major funding for rehabilitation of Leesville water system

The following is a news release from the City of Leesville:

LEESVILLE -- USDA Rural Development announced Monday that it would provide nearly $16.2 million in funding for the City of Leesville to make improvements to its aging water system.
Officials say the enhancements will not only help to ensure the health, sanitation and security of the water system and water users, but also help to conserve 40 million gallons of water a month.
The project funding is a combination of a loan and a grant from Rural Development and additional funding from the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals.
Rural Development will provide a loan of $11,342,000 and a grant in the amount of $3,713,000, while the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals will provide funding through principle forgiveness in the amount of $1,125,000.
"Securing this funding is a huge accomplishment for the City of Leesville and a leap forward in becoming good stewards of the resources with which we've been blessed," said Leesville Mayor Robert Rose.
"I'm proud that USDA Rural Development was able to assist the City of Leesville in securing funds to improve the water system that will help create a stronger sustainable community," said USDA Rural Development State Director Clarence W. Hawkins.
The city currently experiences anywhere from 25-30 water leaks at any given time, which translates into a loss of about $30,000 every month.
"These water leaks have held us captive and pushed us dangerously close to the edge of disaster for too long. The funding from Rural Development has renewed our landscape. No longer are we courting disaster with our water system. No longer are we simply patching a failing system."
The new system will provide a water supply to the city's more than 3,300 active customers.
In addition, updates to the system will provide standby power during power outages.
The improvements will also ensure an emergency water supply for Fort Polk.

About the improvements
This USDA Rural Development funding will facilitate necessary improvements to the water system, which should improve water services, reduce water loss, and help to ensure a reliable, safe source of water for the future. The project includes replacement of many distribution mains, including up-sizing of various water mains to improve water pressure and service, replacement of many old hydrants, installation of two new 720 gallon per minute wells, new generators for backup power supply, rehabilitation of two elevated water storage tanks and one non-elevated water storage tank, construction of two new 500,000 gallon storage tanks and various other improvements to the existing water system. The total project cost is $16,180,000.00 with approximately $15,055,000.00 assistance from USDA/RD and the remainder coming from Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals.
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Location : Leesville
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