By SHARON K. HALL
Representatives from two different funding sources attended the Hindman City Council meeting Monday night creating a forum-type discussion with the council. Finding money to rehab the Hindman Sewer Plant is the mayor’s 2016 goal. Last year the focus was reducing water loss. They had success; as they repaired leaks the water loss went from 800 gallons per minute to down to an average of 5 gallons per minute loss.
Mayor Tracy Neice stated, “We need money for the plant itself. We have equipment not working and the electric bill is running $3,000 a month. The first year we concentrated on the water leaks and I’m fairly confident we helped that. Now we need to concentrate on sewer. Is there anything we can do to get help with the sewer?”
KRADD representative Annette Napier replied, “We could apply for a CDBG (Community Development Block Grant). It is a 50/50 percent matching grant. We could try to match it with an ARC grant or Rural Development loan. We could apply for it to be all grant. It is rare but possible. The first step is to get an engineer and get an estimate of the cost to do it.”
There are cases that an engineer would not be required for a CDBG application, instances like replacing equipment. It was discussed that a major upgrade would be needed.
Tim Blanton of Kentucky Rural Water Association said, “The sewer plant is structurally falling apart. The pump motor is outdated and worn out and the chemical feed system is worn. My question would be, what is the cost effective comparison of running the plant you have now to building a new one?”
Blanton offered his expertise and the resources of the federally funded non-profit organization Kentucky Rural Water to help with repairs or rehabilitation of the sewer plant located on west Highway 550. Blanton was instrumental in helping the Hindman water department identify and fix water leaks last year. Neice reasoned that once the sewer plant has been upgraded money saved on electrical bills could be a monthly payment on a rebuilt sewer plant. Finance advisor Kevin Jacobs said he was certain that Southern Water in Floyd County has been charging Hindman an incorrect tax amount. He wasn’t sure how many years they could go back..
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