Savannah, Ga. – Thirteen Georgia communities were awarded financing totaling $14,415,555 for water, sewer and wastewater infrastructure improvements by the Georgia Environmental Finance Authority (GEFA) board of directors.

The communities include the cities of Baldwin, Baxley, Cleveland, Cochran, Dawsonville, Hartwell, Homerville, Irwinton, Maysville, Ringgold, Sandersville, Fannin County Water Authority, and Lumpkin County Water & Sewerage Authority.

Approved Loans:

  • Baldwin was awarded a $540,000 Drinking Water State Revolving Fund (DWSRF) loan.
  • Baxley was awarded a $1,852,500 Clean Water State Revolving Fund (CWSRF) loan.
  • Cleveland was awarded a $478,055 CWSRF loan.
  • Cochran was awarded a $2,500,000 CWSRF loan and a $2,572,500 DWSRF loan.
  • Dawsonville was awarded a $445,500 CWSRF loan.
  • Hartwell was awarded a $1,000,000 CWSRF loan.
  • Homerville was awarded a $710,000 DWSRF loan
  • Irwinton was awarded a $450,000 Georgia Fund loan.
  • Maysville was awarded a $795,000 DWSRF loan.
  • Ringgold was awarded a $217,000 DWSRF loan.
  • Sandersville was awarded a $1,200,000 CWSRF loan.
  • Fannin County Water Authority was awarded a $905,000 DWSRF loan.
  • Lumpkin County Water & Sewerage Authority was awarded a $750,000 DWSRF loan.

Quotes:

“The loan programs offered by GEFA assist local governments with improving 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 express my appreciation to 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.

“GEFA’s low-interest financing helps communities throughout the state. The projects that we agreed to finance 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 Baldwin

The $540,000 DWSRF loan will finance replacing 1,900 water meters with an automatic meter reading (AMR) system, including software and meter reading equipment. The project will ensure more accurate meter reading data, and reduce revenue loss and water loss in the system, as well as manpower and fuel consumption. Baldwin will pay 0.50 percent interest on the 10-year loan. The loan qualifies for a reduced interest rate because it’s an eligible water conservation project, and up to $216,000 in principal forgiveness, if all loan funds are drawn.

City of Baxley

The $1,852,500 CWSRF loan will finance constructing a 650 kilowatt (kW) solar installation adjacent to the city’s wastewater treatment plant. The project will provide solar power to the wastewater treatment facility to offset energy costs, and provide long-term, sustainable power generation for the city’s wastewater treatment operations. Baxley will pay 1.03 percent interest on the 20-year loan. The loan qualifies for an interest rate reduction because the solar installation is a renewable energy activity, and up to $275,000 in principal forgiveness, if all loan funds are drawn.

City of Cleveland

The $478,055 CWSRF loan will finance adding 4,200 linear feet of 8-inch gravity sewer line, decommissioning an existing sewer pump station and converting it into a manhole, and obtaining necessary easements. The project will provide service to residential and commercial customers relying solely on septic systems. The city will pay 2.03 percent interest on the 20-year loan.

City of Cochran

The $2,500,000 CWSRF loan will finance rehabilitating approximately 36,000 linear feet of existing sewer lines and manholes and replacing two pump stations. The project will reduce sewer overflows, and inflow and infiltration in the city’s collection system.

The $2,572,500 DWSRF loan will finance rehabilitating four existing elevated storage tanks, replacing approximately 15,000 linear feet of 1- and 2-inch service lines with new 6-inch water mains, and related appurtenances, distribution system improvements that include valve replacements at strategic locations, and replacing approximately 2,280 water meters with an automatic meter reading (AMR) system, including software and meter reading equipment. This project will improve the reliability of the city’s water distribution system. The AMR project will facilitate collecting accurate meter reading data and reduce system losses.

Cochran will pay 1.03 percent interest for the 20-year CWSRF loan. The loan qualifies for an interest rate reduction because the inflow and infiltration reduction portion of the project is an energy conservation activity, and includes up to $500,000 in principal forgiveness, if all loan funds are drawn.

Cochran will pay 1.31 percent interest for the 20-year DWSRF loan, and includes up to $500,000 in principal forgiveness, if all loan funds are drawn. This loan has a blended rate calculated on the 1.03 percent reduced interest rate for the water line and water meter replacement portions of the project, which are water conservation activities, and the 2.03 percent interest rate for the tank rehabilitation project.

City of Dawnsonville

The $445,500 CWSRF loan finance constructing an additional 800,000 gallon aeration pond to operate in series between the city’s existing aeration pond, and the holding pond for the city’s land application system. The project will improve the city’s wastewater effluent quality. The city will pay 2.03 percent interest on the 20-year loan.

City of Hartwell

The $1,000,000 CWSRF loan will finance updating the filter system at the city’s wastewater treatment plant. The project will allow the plant to more efficiently meet wastewater discharge permit limits. The city will pay 1.03 percent interest on the 20-year loan, which is eligible for a reduced interest rate since Hartwell is designated as a WaterFirst Community by the Georgia Department of Community Affairs. The loan is eligible for $196,000 in principal forgiveness, if all loan funds are drawn.

City of Homerville

The $710,000 DWSRF loan will finance replacing 1,360 residential water meters and 29 commercial water meters with an automatic meter reading (AMR) system, including software and meter reading equipment. The project will ensure more accurate meter reading data, reducing revenue and water loss in the system. Homerville will pay 1.03 percent interest on the 20-year loan. The loan qualifies for a reduced interest rate because it’s an eligible water conservation project, and $284,000 in principal forgiveness, if all loan funds are drawn.

City of Irwinton

The $450,000 Georgia Fund loan will finance installing altitude valves at two water tanks, and installing water lines, flushing hydrants, isolation valves, and an automatic meter reading (AMR) system. The project will reduce water loss in the city’s water distribution system, as well as enhance the functionality and ease of the system’s operation. Irwinton will pay 2.49 percent interest on the 20-year loan. The loan has a blended interest rate calculated on the 2.03 percent interest rate for the water meter replacement portion of the project, which is a water conservation activity, and the 3.03 percent interest rate for the valve, water line and hydrant projects

City of Maysville

The $795,000 DWSRF loan will finance replacing an additional 15,600 linear feet of waterlines, fire hydrants, and additional automatic meter reading (AMR) system meters. Maysville will pay 1.03 percent interest on the 20-year loan, which qualifies for a reduced interest rate because it’s an eligible water conservation project. This is an increase to a $1,350,000 loan approved by the GEFA board in May 2015.

City of Ringgold

The $217,000 DWSRF loan will finance implementing a liquid chemical feed system to improve the control, accuracy and efficiency of the chemicals in the water treatment system. The project will improve water quality and plant safety, decrease the cost of finished water, and provide a separate room for the addition of fluoride. Ringgold will pay 0.50 percent interest on the five-year loan, which includes principal forgiveness of up to $86,000, if all loan funds are drawn.

City of Sandersville

The $1,200,000 CWSRF loan will finance installing a 15-inch interceptor sewer to eliminate two overloaded pump stations in the city’s sewage collection system. The project will reduce energy consumption and improve reliability in the city’s collection system. The city will pay 1.03 percent interest on the 20-year loan. The loan qualifies for an interest rate reduction because the sewer installation is a renewable energy activity, and up to $240,000 in principal forgiveness, if all loan funds are drawn.

Fannin County Water Authority

The $905,000 DWSRF loan will finance installing new water lines in two areas of the county currently served by private wells. The water system improvements will consist of approximately 18,500 linear feet of water distribution mains, hydrant and valve installations, and other appurtenances. The Fannin County Water Authority will pay 2.03 percent interest on the 20-year loan, which includes principal forgiveness of up to $362,000, if all loan funds are drawn.

Lumpkin County Water & Sewerage Authority

The $750,000 DWSRF loan will constructing approximately 12,600 linear feet of 12-inch ductile iron water line and appurtenances along Auraria Road and Georgia Highway 400. The project will address possible water quality issues and system redundancy by interconnecting existing water lines. The Lumpkin County Water & Sewerage Authority will pay 0.52 percent interest on the 10-year loan, which includes principal forgiveness of up to $300,000, if all loan funds are drawn.

Additional Information:

The CWSRF, a federal loan program administered by GEFA, provides communities throughout Georgia 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 from this program are available up to $25 million.

The DWSRF, a federal loan program administered by GEFA, provides communities throughout Georgia 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 wide 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 from this program 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 from this program are available up to $3 million.

GEFA provides loan financing at a reduced interest rate to local governments and authorities for energy efficiency and renewable energy projects at water and wastewater treatment plants, landfills, and municipal solid waste facilities, in addition to infrastructure improvements. Eligible projects include, but aren’t limited to: landfill gas reclamation; solar photovoltaic and thin film solar geo-membrane covers; wind and biomass; variable frequency drives and energy efficiency measures; energy management systems and controls; biogas heat and power recovery systems; and infiltration and inflow projects that reduce pumping costs.