LDH awards Town of Sunset for $ 500K loan for water improvements - KATC.com | Continuous News Coverage | Acadiana-Lafayette

LDH awards Town of Sunset for $ 500K loan for water improvements

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(PRESS RELEASE) The Louisiana Department of Health’s Office of Public Health awarded a $550,000 loan to the Town of Sunset through the State’s Drinking Water Revolving Loan Fund. The low-interest subsidized loan will help improve the Town of Sunset’s Water System.

The low-interest loan also allows the city not to have to pay back up to $110,000 of the loan for this project.

The loan will fund a project that includes the installation of a complete automatic meter reading system throughout the town, including leak detection and software to interface with the current utility billing system. Additionally, all broken, malfunctioning and aged meters will be replaced with new water meters.

LDH and Town of Sunset officials closed the loan on Thursday, December 28, 2017.  

“The town administration and the citizens of Sunset are looking forward to the enhancements that the installation of the automatic meter reading system will bring to our water system operations and the overall growth and development plans for our community,” said Mayor Charles James.

Dr. Parham Jaberi, assistant secretary for the Office of Public Health said it is imperative that all Louisiana residents have access to safe drinking water. 

“Access to safe drinking water is critical to all Louisiana residents. The Drinking Water Revolving Loan Fund helps keep water systems up-to-date, bringing safe and clean drinking water to their customers,” Jaberi said.

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.

Once a loan is approved, water systems can use the funds to make their improvements. As the systems pay back the loans, the principal and interest are used to make more money available for other communities that have drinking water needs.  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.

For more information about the program, contact Jennifer Wilson at LDH's Office of Public Health, 225-342-7499.

Photo Caption: In the picture from left to right: Jennifer Wilson,LDH/OPH DWRLF Program Manager; Earl Paddock, PE, Grooms Engineering, LLC;Alderwoman Bernice Smith, Town of Sunset; Mayor Charles James, Town of Sunset; MarkSavoy, PE,  Grooms Engineering, LLC; andDan MacDonald, PE, MBA, LDH/OPH DWRLF Program Engineer. 

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