The Louisiana Department of Health and Hospital (DHH) awarded a $4.2 million loan to the Terrebonne Consolidated Water Works District Number 1 (CWWDN1) through the State's Drinking Water Revolving Loan Fund Program (DWRLF). The low-interest loan will help improve the community's drinking water system.
LDH Assistant Secretary for Public Health, J.T. Lane, said it's imperative that all Louisiana residents have access to safe drinking water, a foundational function of public health. "The DWRLF program gives local communities a source of dependable and affordable financing to bring their water treatment facilities up to the latest and most modern technology that keeps residents safe and healthy."
LDH and District officials closed the on the loan Tuesday, Dec. 23, 2014. DWRLF funding will be used for rehabilitation and upgrades to the existing transmission and distribution system and construction of two chlorine booster stations. The booster stations are designed to increase the chlorine levels in the water to provide the adequate disinfection for the water to travel from the Schriever Water Treatment Plant (WTP) to the outer extends of the system.
General Manager of CWWDN1 Michael A. Sobert said, "Thank you LDH and the Drinking Water Revolving Loan Fund for the loan. We intend to use the proceeds to continue our mission of providing the infrastructure to assure water availability to all of our customers, particularly our Terrebonne General Medical Center and high growth areas of our parish as well as refurbishing some of our older waterlines."
Congress established State Drinking Water Revolving Loan Fund Programs in 1996 as part of the amendments to the Safe Drinking Water Act. The program is jointly funded by an annual grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (80 percent) and the individual participating states (20 percent). In Louisiana, it is administered by LDH's Office of Public Health. Loans made through this program are low interest and have a maximum 20-year repayment period. Both public and privately-owned community and nonprofit, non-community water systems are eligible to apply for loans. All loan projects are approved based upon a priority ranking system. Among other factors, projects that address the most serious risks to human health and those that ensure compliance with the Safe Drinking Water Act are given the highest priority.
"The purpose of the fund is to provide states with a financial mechanism to make below market rate loans to drinking water systems for infrastructure improvements. These improvements assist the systems in complying with the Safe Drinking Water Act and protecting public health," said Jennifer Wilson, Program Manager for the Drinking Water Revolving Loan Fund.
For more information about the program, contact Jennifer Wilson at LDH's Office of Public Health, 225-342-7499.
In the photo above, pictured from left to right: Al Badeaux, CWWDN1 President; Brian Baker, DWRLF Project Engineer; Clifton J. Stoufflet, CWWDN1 Vice President; Chestor P. Voisin, CWWDN1 Secretary; Jerry Osborne, Foley & Judell LLP; Arthur DeFraites, Jr.,P.E., Consultant; Mike Sobert, CWWDN1 General Manager; Jennifer Wilson, DWRLF Program Manager; David Wolf, Adams and Reese, LLP.
The Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals strives to protect and promote health statewide and to ensure access to medical, preventive and rehabilitative services for all state citizens. To learn more about LDH, visit www.dhh.louisiana.gov. For up-to-date health information, news and emergency updates, follow LDH's Twitter account and Facebook.