Paco Valentin, USDA Rural Development State Director in Texas, along with representatives from the Lower Valley Water District and various elected officials, recently broke ground on a new water system that will provide first-time water service to rural residents.
“Many of us take for granted our access to clean drinking water. The reality is that there are still rural areas in America where water systems are nonexistent and residents have never had in-home access to water,” said Valentin. “Rural Development is pleased to be part of this groundbreaking, which will provide a modern water system for the Colonias, and bring clean in-home drinking water to the families in this area.”
USDA Rural Development has provided a $1,996,000 loan and $3,354,300 grant to the Lower Valley Water District for Phase I of the Sandhills Water Improvement Project. Funding will be used to provide first-time water service to over 190 families along the Sandhills Pressure Zone (SHPZ) in Colina del Paso and Ascencion. Currently colonias along the SHPZ rely on trucks to haul in potable water. Lower Valley Water District has proposed to construct new water supply infrastructures that will provide in-home potable water connections to residents in the communities within the SHPZ. The construction would include two new ground storage tanks, chlorination facilities, water transmission/distribution lines, and fire protection.
“The Lower Valley Water District is truly proud of all the hard work from everyone working collectively to bring this project to reality,” said David Carrasco, Lower Valley Water District General Manager. “We greatly appreciate the commitment of the residents of the Sandhills community, the officials from USDA, and the Board of Directors of the LVWD. We also look forward to our continued partnership with USDA in helping bring needed services to the residents of the district.
This project will lay the groundwork for Phase 2, which will include providing in home potable water to the colonias of College Park, Darrington Park, Dairyland and Vista Larga. In a surprise announcement during the groundbreaking, State Director Valentin presented the Lower Valley Water District with an additional $3,500,000 grant to fund this second phase which consists of approximately 173 connections and 73,000 linear feet of distributions lines.