Henderson Area Water Systems Wins Improvement Grant

St. Martin Parish’s Henderson-Nina Water System (HNWS) received $4 million from the Louisiana Department of Health’s Clean Water Revolving Fund (DWRLF) program to consolidate with six local water systems and invest in improvements to eliminate the problems of arsenic contamination and insufficient residual chlorine that currently exist in these small systems.

HNWS will consolidate three community water supply systems: TESI Atchafalaya Acres, River Ridge Estates and Elm Point Estates; and three non-community water systems: Atchafalaya Basin Landing, Cajun Heritage RV Park, and McGee’s Swamp Tours.

“These six systems are currently struggling to maintain water quality standards. Community water systems are all subject to by-laws regarding drinking water that exceeds maximum contaminant levels (MCLs) for arsenic. All three non-community systems have violations relating to maintaining minimum chlorine residuals,” said Brian Baker, DWRLF project engineer.

“This project will consolidate these six systems into the Henderson-Nina system, which is fully compliant with water standards, and in doing so, will enable these smaller systems to eliminate administrative orders and other enforcement issues. This effort addresses serious concerns and provides customers with better water,” Baker said.

Professional Engineer Susan Richard of Domingo, Szabo & Associates, Inc., said, “We are pleased to provide the engineering services for this critical improvement to bring clean drinking water to residents of the Henderson and of Butte LaRose. It was our pleasure

working with Henderson-Nina water system officials, as well as the Louisiana Department of Health, to complete this project.

“Bringing these customers together under one safe and efficient drinking water system benefits the health, safety and well-being of the public,” said Richard. “Our regret is that Ray Robin, the former system manager who passed away this year, could not see the success of his efforts. We miss him and hope he looks forward to his project with joy.

Richard said the funds will be used to install water transmission lines from Cypress Cove to Butte La Rose primarily using existing rights-of-way. She estimated that more than 107,000 linear feet of PVC pipe will be used for the construction of the transmission line. The new lines will also be supported by a booster pump station that handles 350 gallons per minute and a 200,000 gallon ground storage tank with chlorine injection to maintain water pressure and residual chlorine throughout the system. extended. She said the pumps and ground storage tank will be built in the Butte La Rose area.

HNWS currently operates water service for approximately 1,500 customers in the City of Henderson and the unincorporated area of ​​St. Martin Parish adjacent to Henderson. The consolidation of HNWS customers and the six smaller systems will expand HNWS to nearly 2,300 customers.

“Funding for this project is part of our program’s new Consolidation Initiative program, which provides 100% forgiveness for approved projects that eliminate existing public water systems that pose a threat to public health.” , said Joel McKenzie, DWRLF project manager. .

“The Consolidation Initiative Program is available to any compliant water system that wishes to consolidate with a neighboring system that is not compliant with the Safe Drinking Water Act. All loan projects are approved based on a priority ranking system. Projects that address the most serious human health risks and those that ensure compliance with the Safe Drinking Water Act receive the highest priority,” McKenzie said.

He noted that several community systems across the state have already applied to take advantage of DWRLF’s funding option. HNWS received its $4 million loan from the Consolidation Initiative Program on April 27, 2022.

“The Drinking Water Revolving Loan Fund Consolidation Initiative Program has enabled residents of this water system to improve their local drinking water infrastructure without any financial burden on citizens, as the program covers 100% of the cost,” said Amanda, LDH’s chief engineer. said Ames.

“Clean water is fundamental to community health, and this program helps communities across Louisiana keep their water as safe as possible without imposing an undue burden in the form of costly funding,” Ames said.

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