Sandy Lake Water group earns $717K

Published 12:00 am Friday, August 3, 2001

JONESVILLE, La. – The Sandy Lake Water System has been awarded a $407,000 loan and a $310,000 grant from the federal government for system improvements, U.S. Rep. John Cooksey’s office announced Friday.

The system has not yet received a check for the money from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Rural Development Agency. But water officials already know what they will do with the money.

According to Cooksey, the funds &uot;will enable the system to develop a new water well for residents in this area.&uot;

The system’s service area covers the communities of Sandy Lake and Trinity and households south of Harrisonburg, Ewing said.

&uot;But first, we’ll lay four miles of eight-inch pipe between the wells and our water tank,&uot; said Bobby Ewing, president of the water system’s board.

That will help insure better chlorine distribution and water pressure for all of the system’s 960 water users, he said.

&uot;Then we’ll drill a third well,&uot; Ewing said. &uot;And if there’s enough money left over, we’ll paint one of our water tanks and maybe build a shed for our office building.&uot;

Once the system’s engineers have drawn up specifications for the project, the board will advertise for bids.

Once bids are accepted, the improvements should take two to three months to complete, Ewing said.

The Sandy Lake Water System was created in 1969, &uot;so it’s fairly old,&uot; Ewing said. &uot;Plus, we’ve added quite a few customers since then, so our demand for water is much greater now than it was then.&uot;

The last time the system received a grant for improvements was in 1988, when it received a federal grant and loan to build an elevated tank. The exact amount of that award was not available as of Friday.

&uot;I’d like to thank everyone that helped us obtain this grant and loan. It was definitely needed,&uot;&160;Ewing said, adding that it took more than one year of work to get the funds.