Governor McDonnell Announces $3.5 Million in Funding to Provide Public Water to 141 Homes in Buchanan County

Water Project Funded by Virginia Abandoned Mine Land Program

RICHMOND – Governor Bob McDonnell announced today that Buchanan County will receive a total of $3,500,000 in Abandoned Mine Land (AML) funds for a public water project that will provide drinking water to 141 homes in a portion of the county near the Hurley community.  The project has been selected for construction funding beginning in April 2012 under Virginia’s AML FY 2012 Grant administered by the Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy.  Water supplies in the project area were impacted by pre-1981 coal mining activities making them eligible for AML funds.

Governor Bob McDonnell noted that the increased funds available for Virginia’s AML Program will enable additional coalfield communities impacted by past mining to obtain reliable, clean drinking water supplies.  “Due to the recent reauthorization of the federal Abandoned Mine Land Program and a subsequent increase in available grant funds, Virginia is continuing to expand the construction of public water projects in the Southwest Virginia coalfield region,” said Governor McDonnell.  Virginia AML funds originate from reclamation taxes paid by the state’s coal industry.

“We commend the Buchanan County Board of Supervisors on behalf of their PSA for seeking this grant, as well as the supplemental funds that will make this project possible,” said Commerce and Trade Secretary Jim Cheng. “Virginia’s AML program has assisted coalfield communities to connect to public water systems since 1984.  To date, over $36,890,983 in AML funding has been used to help supply 8,207 households with public water.”

The Hurley Regional Water Line Extension Phase III-B Water Project will extend a public water system to 141 residents in Buchanan County and represents the continuation of a program to provide clean drinking water to the residents of the county. The project advances a phased commitment of construction for the extension of public water service into the Hurley area of Buchanan County.  Additional funding for the project will come from the Department of Housing and Community Development; Coalfield Water Development Fund; Southwest Virginia Regional Water and Wastewater Construction Fund; and Buchanan County Public Service Authority and Board of Supervisors.