Colfax PSD To Apply For Small Cities Block Grant - Clarksburg, Morgantown: News, Sports, Weather

Colfax PSD To Apply For Small Cities Block Grant

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The Small Cities Block Grant allows every county in the state of West Virginia to become eligible for $1.5 million toward a project of choice.

The program, which is funded through HUD, will give eligible communities the funding they need for a certain project.

Colfax Public Service District shared its ideas for the grant money at a public hearing at the Marion County Commission's meeting on Wednesday.

Representatives from Thrasher Engineering say the Colfax sewage system is in dire need of help and this money can help fix the problem.

"Colfax PSD has a failing wastewater treatment plant," said Kylea DeMarco, Thrasher Engineering Project Manager. "It's actually on a piece of land that is not so stable. They have some failing infrastructure and a significant problem with water from the river on high occasions coming into the system."

Thrasher said there are a couple ways to fix the problem, but it already has a method of choice if Colfax is awarded the grant money.

"We would like to connect to the Kingmill Valley Public Service District," DeMarco said. "We have had communication with them and the city of Fairmont and are currently in negotiations with them about this preferred method."

If the grant is approved, Colfax PSD would pay the City of Fairmont to treat the water.

Thrasher said Colfax PSD serves only 129 customers. The work needs to be done and without the grant money, the community would have to get a loan.

In order to pay back the loan, Colfax PSD would have to raise the customers rates. Being awarded the grant would be able to prevent that.

The Marion County Commission passed a motion in support of the project and will serve as a sponsor throughout the process.

A second public hearing to present the application will be held in the coming months.

The preliminary application is due on March 10.

In other business:

Chris McIntire of the Worthington Volunteer Fire Department said the department is in dire need of a new engine.

McIntire said there has been a lot of problems, including the brakes.

The community donates around $9,000 a year to the volunteer fire department, but it is no where near enough, according to McIntire.

The Marion County Commission and Region 6 Planning and Development will work with Worthington VFD on funding options.