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USDA funding helps expand water access in Scott County

Published: Dec. 20, 2021 at 4:03 PM CST
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WINCHESTER, Ill. (WGEM) - More people in Scott County, Illinois, will have access to fresh water thanks to funding from the USDA.

The agency announced last week that they were investing more than $5 billion to build and improve critical infrastructure across the nation.

As part of that investment, a $1.6 million loan and $200,000 grant were awarded to the Scott-Morgan-Greene Water Cooperative based in Jacksonville.

The cooperative serves 1,150+ people in the three counties, including more than 400 total miles of water lines.

They also provide emergency backup service to several communities in Scott County, such as Winchester, Alsey and Manchester.

Cooperative president Steve Grubb says the funding will be used to help expand water access for more residents.

“That’s what this money is for,” said Grubb. “It’s for water lines. And we put the water lines in, and we’re hoping to provide, on this phase, about another 50 households with approximately another 20-25 miles of water lines.”

He said this expansion, among the many others that have taken place since its founding in 1988, would not be possible without the help of the USDA.

“We’re very thankful for USDA, without them we could not have put this water line in. Without grants that we get from them and the low interest loans, we wouldn’t be able to pay for the systems that we put in. I mean it’s fairly expensive going across country,” said Grubb.

You can find out more about the USDA’s initiative to improve critical infrastructure here.

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