TUCKERMAN, AR (KAIT) - The city of Tuckerman will soon have a new water treatment plant.
Mayor Larry Bowen said they will also make several updates throughout their water and sewer system. The funding announcement for the project will be held Tuesday at the Tuckerman City Hall. Bowen said the city will build a new 300,000 gallon water tower, install radio-read meters and replace some of the sewer lift stations.
"We've been waiting on this a long time," Bowen told Region 8 News.
For more than 30 years, Tuckerman residents have grown accustomed to brown water flowing from their faucets but that will soon be a thing of the past.
The project will be funded through a grant and loan from USDA Rural Development. Construction will begin in 2015.
"We had this problem when I took office, I knew we would battle it for a long time and finally after four years, as the saying goes there is light at the end of the tunnel," Bowen said.
Although the water is safe to drink, it contains manganese which gives it a brown tint and leaves dingy stains on clothes. The current water plant was built in 1981. The ground storage tank was built in the 1960's and the elevated tank in the 1950's. Mayor Bowen said he wanted to make repairs to the current system but was advised differently.
"They said it would be cheaper and better to build a new water plant," he said.
USDA Rural Development presented the city with a loan for about $3 million and a grant for $2 million for both the water and waste water project. Water rates will go up slightly but Bowen says it's worth it.
"We've improved the water quality a whole lot since I've been here," he said. "I'm anxious to get it built."
Congressman Rick Crawford was in attendance and there were also representatives from Senator Mark Pryor and Senator Boozman's office.