Governor's Office for Local Development

Press Release Date:  Thursday, December 21, 2006  
Contact Information:  Samantha Cook
Public Information Officer

Clean, safe drinking water and agriculture diversification were the topics of discussion during Governor Ernie Fletcher’s visit to Cumberland County this afternoon.  The Governor presented local officials with ceremonial checks totaling $1,198,000 during a ceremony at the new Veterans Memorial Community Building in Burkesville.

The largest check, a $2 million Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) for Burkesville/Cumberland County Water Treatment Plant Expansion Project, was a surprise to local officials.  Funds will be used to expand the Burkesville water treatment plant from a 0.5 million gallons per day (MGD) facility to a 2.0 MGD facility.


“Safe, portable water should be available to all people across Kentucky, and my administration is working diligently to make certain that it becomes a reality,” said Governor Fletcher.  “This project will ensure that more citizens of Cumberland County have clean drinking water.”


A plant that is currently operated by the Cumberland County Water District (CCWD) would be closed and lines will be constructed to connect the county water system with the city system.  The CCWD would maintain its distribution system and purchase water from the city of Burkesville.


“The Burkesville plant has been operating well above capacity for quite some time,” said Senate President David L. Williams (R-Burkesville).  “These grant funds will create a solution to this overextension.”


The city of Burkesville has been under a total tap-on ban since May 2006.  In January 2006, the plant operated at 201 percent capacity.  Peaks during the summer months of 2005 reached 232 percent capacity.  The project will serve 2,977 customers.


“This project is a collaborative effort between state and local officials who saw a problem and worked to address it,” said Rep Jamie Comer (R-Tompkinsville).  “I am very pleased to see these funds awarded to such a worthy project.”

Kentucky's U. S. Congressional leaders continued support of the CDBG program has made the funding available nationally as well as within the commonwealth.  The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development makes these funds available through GOLD, which administers the CDBG Small Cities program in Kentucky.

Agriculture Diversification Funding


Also while in Cumberland County, Governor Fletcher presented $173,138 in agricultural diversification funding to the Cumberland County Agricultural Development Council.  


Governor Fletcher and the Kentucky Legislature continue to make great strides towards lessening Kentucky’s dependence on tobacco production while revitalizing the farm economy by investing 50 percent of Kentucky's Master Settlement Agreement into the Kentucky Agricultural Development Fund.  To date, Kentucky has invested more than $230 million to an array of county, regional and state projects designed to increase net farm income and create sustainable new farm-based business enterprises.


More than 2,730 projects have been funded through the Agricultural Development Fund since the inception of the program in January 2001.