Georgia communities receive infrastructure loans totaling $26.1 million

November 10, 2016

Twelve Georgia communities were awarded financing totaling $26,145,000 for water, sewer, wastewater and solid waste infrastructure improvements by the Georgia Environmental Finance Authority (GEFA) board of directors.

Approved loans:

  • Adairsville awarded a $1,848,000 Drinking Water State Revolving Fund (DWSRF) conservation loan
  • Argyle awarded a $103,000 DWSRF loan
  • Bartow awarded a $174,000 DWSRF loan
  • Bowdon awarded a $1,250,000 DWSRF conservation loan
  • College Park awarded a $2,000,000 DWSRF loan
  • Damascus awarded a $403,000 DWSRF loan
  • Fort Valley Utility Commission awarded a $1,000,000 Clean Water State Revolving Fund (CWSRF) loan
  • Newton County awarded a $2,617,000 Georgia Fund loan   
  • Jesup awarded a $1,710,000 CWSRF conservation loan
  • Rincon awarded $2,540,000 DWSRF loan
  • Waycross awarded a $3,500,000 DWSRF conservation loan
  • Winder awarded a $9,000,000 DWSRF loan

Quotes:

“GEFA loans help local governments improve their environmental infrastructure. Financing water, wastewater, solid waste, and energy, land and water conservation projects encourages economic growth and the stewardship of our environment.” – GEFA Executive Director Kevin Clark.

“I’d like to thank Gov. Deal, the Georgia Congressional delegation, and the members of the General Assembly for their support. The state’s commitment to helping cities and counties finance infrastructure projects contributes greatly to improving Georgia’s water resources.” – GEFA Executive Director Kevin Clark.

“Low-interest financing from GEFA helps communities throughout the state. The projects financed today demonstrate that GEFA is investing in communities that are willing to invest in themselves.” – Chairman of the GEFA Board of Directors and Mayor of Dallas Boyd L. Austin.

Project and loan details:

City of Adairsville

The $1,848,000 DWSRF loan will finance the rehabilitation of the city’s water treatment plant, including a new water filter unit, modifications to the pumping stations, and upgrades to the chemical feed system. This project will address the need for redundancy in the city’s water distribution system and allow for a more efficient operation of its water treatment plant. The city will pay 1.55 percent on the 20-year loan. The loan qualifies for a reduced interest rate because it’s an eligible conservation project. 

Town of Argyle 

The $103,000 DWSRF loan will finance the rehabilitation of the elevated water tank including repairing the tank, vent, sand blasting, pressure washing, painting the exterior and interior, and all related appurtenances. This project will resolve health issues related to water quality. The town will pay 1.89 percent on the 20-year loan, which includes principal forgiveness up to $40,000 if all funds are drawn.

Town of Bartow  

The $174,000 DWSRF loan will finance the rehabilitation and repainting of an elevated water tank and all related appurtenances. The town will pay 1.40 percent on the 15-year loan.

City of Bowdon

The $1,250,000 DWSRF loan will finance upgrading to an automatic meter reading (AMR) system, installing a supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) system, and replacing leaking water mains and service lines in the water distribution system. This project will allow the city to reduce water loss, enhance system reliability, and reduce operation and maintenance requirements. The city will pay 0.89 percent interest rate on the 20-year loan. The loan qualifies for a reduced interest rate because it’s an eligible conservation project, and includes principal forgiveness up to $500,000 if all loan funds are drawn.  

City of College Park

The $2,000,000 DWSRF loan will finance the construction of three wells to reduce the city’s dependency on purchasing water from East Point and Clayton County, and lessen demand on the Flint River during periods of drought. The city will pay 1.89 percent on the 20-year loan.

City of Damascus

The $403,000 DWSRF loan will finance the rehabilitation of the city’s existing 100,000 gallon elevated water tank, which includes leak repairs, water main repair or replacement, and repainting the tank. This project will eliminate health and safety risks associated with the city’s elevated water tank in order to improve water quality. The city will pay 1.89 percent on the 20-year loan, which includes principal forgiveness up to $161,000 if all funds are drawn out.

Fort Valley Utility Commission   

The $1,000,000 CWSRF loan will finance the installation of a new oxygenation system at the Lanter Water Reclamation Facility (WRF). The project will restore the effective capacity of the Lanter WRF from 1.7 million gallons per day (MGD) to 2.2 MGD while keeping the plant effluent in applicable permit limits. The commission will pay 1.89 percent interest on the 20-year loan, which includes a principal forgiveness up to $150,000 if all funds are drawn.

City of Jesup

The $1,710,000 CWSRF loan will finance the construction of a 600 kilowatt (kW) solar photovoltaic system adjacent to the city’s wastewater treatment plant. This project will provide energy efficiency improvements to the wastewater treatment plant and lower the overall cost for electricity to operate the plant. The city will pay 0.89 percent interest on the 20-year loan. The loan qualifies for an interest rate reduction because it’s an eligible conservation project, and includes principal forgiveness up to $427,500 if all funds are drawn.  

Newton County

The $2,617,000 Georgia Fund loan will finance the remediation of contaminated sediment basins, repairs and upgrades to the leachate collection system, installation of extraction wells, and a final cover system to close phase one and two of the landfill. This project will repair and upgrade the leachate collection system and remediate contaminated sediment basins that were damaged during a heavy rain event during December 2015. The county will pay 1.39 percent on the 20-year loan, which is eligible for a reduced interest rate since Newtown County is designated as a WaterFirst Community by the Georgia Department of Community Affairs.

City of Rincon  

The $2,540,000 DWSRF loan will finance the construction of a 250,000 gallon elevated water tank, well house, pumping station, chemical fees system, a 12-inch water main to connect to the water distribution system, installation of an emergency generator, and all related appurtenances. This project will allow the city to utilize the Lower Floridan aquifer as an additional water supply source to address current and future water demands in the north and central part of the city. The city will pay 1.89 percent on a 20-year loan.

City of Waycross  

The $3,500,000 DWSRF loan will help finance replacing approximately 7,570 water meters with an advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) system. This project will replace the current water meter system with an AMI technology that will allow for a more efficient water distribution system and more accurate water billing. The city will pay 0.65 percent interest rate on the 15-year loan. The loan qualifies for a reduced interest rate because it’s an eligible conservation project, and includes principal forgiveness up to $500,000 in all loan funds are drawn.

City of Winder

The $9,000,000 DWSRF loan will finance the construction of a 6.7 million gallons per day (MGD) raw water intake, pump station and transmission main that will deliver water from Fort Yargo Lake to the Highway 53 Water Treatment Plant. This project will allow the city to address undersized infrastructure and the emergency water source needs at the Fort Yargo raw water system. The city will pay 0.89 percent on a 20-year loan. The city is a WaterFirst designed community through the Georgia Department of Community Affairs, which qualifies it for a reduced interest rate.

Other board actions:

City of Buchanan  

The board awarded a $360,000 increase to a Georgia Fund loan originally approved in March 2014 for $1,756,000. Bids for construction came in higher than estimated for the original loan.

City of Hinesville

The board awarded a $1,500,000 increase to a CWSRF loan originally approved in May 2016 for $4,622,450. Bids for construction came in higher than estimated for the original loan.

Additional information:

The CWSRF, a federal loan program administered by GEFA, provides communities with low-interest loans to fund wastewater infrastructure and water pollution control projects. The program is jointly funded by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the state of Georgia. Eligible projects include a variety of stormwater and wastewater collection and treatment projects. These projects conserve and improve water resources, and facilitate economic growth and development. Low-interest loans are available up to $25 million.

The DWSRF, a federal loan program administered by GEFA, provides communities with low-interest loans to fund water infrastructure projects that deliver safe, affordable drinking water. The program is jointly funded by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the state of Georgia. Eligible projects include a variety of public health or compliance related water supply projects. These projects conserve and improve water resources, and facilitate economic growth and development. Low-interest loans are available up to $25 million.

The Georgia Fund, a state-funded program administered by GEFA, provides communities with low-interest loans for water, wastewater, water conservation and solid waste infrastructure projects. Eligible projects include water and sewer lines, treatment plants, pumping stations, wells, water storage tanks and water meters. These projects conserve and improve water resources, and facilitate economic growth and development. Low-interest loans are available up to $3 million.

GEFA provides loan financing at a reduced interest rate for energy efficiency and renewable energy projects at water and wastewater treatment plants, landfills, and municipal solid waste facilities; water conservation projects in the areas of water loss and end-use water efficiency; and land conservation projects, including fee title and conservation easement purchases.