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Water project help on the way

by Jennifer Biller

STAFF WRITER

The Harrison County Commission will be offering the city of Shinnston a $10,000 loan from the county's revolving loan fund to upgrade a water line on Tetrick Road.

Shinnston City Manager Jeff Silka wrote to the commission requesting assistance to help the city comply with an order from the Public Service Commission to revamp water lines in that area.

After receiving complaints about water supply and quality from residents on Tetrick Road, the PSC ordered the city to upgrade the two-inch water line to a six-inch water line.

The project would cost $123,000 for the line that services 24 people, according to the letter presented at the meeting.

"The city of Shinnston doesn't have that kind of money available, so to comply with the PSC order we are pursuing all funding avenues," Silka said.

The city is seeking state aid and grants and is also looking at the current water rates to see if they need to be adjusted, he said. The line upgrades are tentatively scheduled to be completed by April, he added.

For the past two years the PSC has received complaints about water pressure in the area, Silka said.

"The problems could be alleviated by less drastic measures," Silka said. "A six- inch line is overkill in that area. Water pressure could be maintained with a four-inch line and it would be less costly."

Ron Robertson, an attorney for the PSC who works with water projects, believes that six-inch lines are the best alternative.

"They provide better flow and a better water pressure," he said.

The county's revolving loan fund has been used in the past to aid various economic development projects by providing low interest loans, according to James Harris, commission administrator.

The revolving loan fund contains about $20,000, Harris said.

Staff writer Jennifer Biller can be reached at 626-1449 or jbiller@exponent-telegram.com.

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