Gov. Beshear Awards More Than $2.7 Million to Scott, Harrison Counties Through Cleaner Water Program

Four grantees receive funding for water infrastructure improvements

GEORGETOWN/CYNTHIANA, Ky. (Dec. 1, 2021) – Today, Gov. Andy Beshear awarded a total of $2,787,139 for six projects to the cities of Georgetown and Cynthiana, as well as the Harrison County Sanitation District and the Harrison County Water Association.

The funding, from the Better Kentucky Plan’s $250 million Cleaner Water Program, will deliver clean drinking water and improved sewer and water systems. State officials estimate that the program will create approximately 3,800 jobs across the commonwealth.

“The Cleaner Water Program, along with the cooperative partnerships of our counties, cities and water and wastewater utilities, helps to build quality water and sewer systems that make a difference for our families because it ensures a basic human right for Kentuckians – access to clean drinking water,” said Gov. Beshear. “That’s a top priority for my administration, and with this program we are making great progress. Even better: We’re creating roughly 3,800 jobs while we do it.”

Funded by the American Rescue Plan Act and administered by the Kentucky Infrastructure Authority (KIA), $250 million was appropriated at the close of the 2021 General Assembly through a bipartisan agreement to fund clean drinking water and wastewater grants for projects across Kentucky.

The Bluegrass Area Development District submitted the funding requests for all projects announced today to the KIA. Funds will be used to invest in projects ranging from the extension of water lines to serve new customers to updated technology, and will use each county’s entire allocation from the Cleaner Water Program.  

The City of Georgetown will receive $2,093,531 for a water line extension that will strengthen the water distribution system, especially on the northwest side of town, and will include 17,750 feet of water main, extending it along the new bypass to provide service to underserved properties. This project also includes a new water booster pump station and enhances fire protection service to the new Scott County High School.

“As our state begins recovering from the COVID-19 pandemic, the legislature continues to fight to ensure we are paving the way for generational growth in all corners of the commonwealth. Federal relief funds will pave the way for projects such as the Cleaner Water Program,” said Rep. Phillip Pratt, who represents Owen County and a portion of Scott and Fayette counties. “I look forward to seeing the much needed updates that will be brought forth as a result of the work done by myself and my colleagues. I thank the Governor and his administration for the opportunity to share this news with Scott County and celebrate this announcement.”

“We are delighted to welcome Gov. Beshear to Georgetown to deliver this critical infrastructure funding,” said Georgetown Mayor Tom Prather. “As Kentucky’s fastest-growing community, water system improvements are vital to our future. This project will extend our system and provide greater protection to the new Scott County High School.”

The City of Cynthiana will receive $269,287 for a 750,000-gallon elevated water storage tank located at the Cynthiana/Harrison County EDA Industrial Park. The new tank will provide higher flow and water pressure to new and existing industries at the park, as well as to customers served to the south and west of Cynthiana’s distribution system. This project also will bring better efficiency and reliability to the existing water treatment plant by replacing aged valves and controls with current technology.

The City of Cynthiana will recieve an additional $62,000 to replace three inadequate, maintenance-intensive pump stations serving Harrison Memorial Hospital, a new assisted living facility and 100 homes currently being developed.

“I am happy that more allocations made by the legislature and administered by the KIA are finding their way to the 27th District,” said Sen. Stephen West, who represents eight counties including Harrison County. “Lawmakers are committed to investing in needed infrastructure. Much goes into making announcements like this possible. Most importantly, it starts with taxpayers who entrust elected officials to do what is best with the precious taxpayer dollars they provide. Projects such as these, expanding broadband access and improving roadways, are investments taxpayers can see and feel. I look forward to the benefits this announcement will bring to Harrison County and appreciate the work of all who made it possible.”

“Our drinking and waste water are important facets in our day-to-day infrastructure. In some cases, clean water can be taken for granted. As time progresses and the infrastructure begins to fail, some communities struggle to recover from the lack of clean water. As federal relief dollars become readily available, I am proud to say that I have fought alongside my colleagues in the legislature to ensure that there is funding available to my district,” said Rep. Mark Hart, who represents Harrison and Pendleton counties as well as a portion of Scott County. “I am excited to see projects come to fruition as a result of our efforts and I appreciate the opportunity to share this exciting news with the people of Cynthiana, Harrison and Scott Counties.”

“I would like to thank Gov. Beshear for his leadership and vision to make investments in the water and sewer infrastructure in Harrison County,” said Harrison County Judge/Executive Alex Barnett. “All of these projects will help prepare us for the future growth headed our way. Clean and safe drinking water as well as reliable sewer/sanitation are a vital necessity to all of our citizens.”

“Providing clean water is one of the primary responsibilities of government at any level but especially here at the local level,” said Cynthiana Mayor James Smith. “And the Cynthiana Water Department is one of the best. Our staff provides some of the best water at one of the lowest price points in the entire state. This grant will go a long way to improving our distribution system and serve not just our citizens but the Harrison County Water Association customers and expand the attractiveness of our business park for economic development.”

A full list of today’s awards can be found here.

About the Cleaner Water Program
A total of $37 million has been awarded to grantees to fund transformative projects since the call for projects was announced June 1. Eligible government agencies, such as city-owned water or sewer utilities, water commissions, water and sewer districts and counties, collaborated with their local Area Development Districts (ADD) and Area Water Management Councils to submit projects for Cleaner Water Program funding. There are 713 public drinking water and wastewater utilities in Kentucky.

Cleaner Water program funding is allocated in three ways:

  • $150 million based on each county’s proportion of the state’s population, with the exception of Jefferson County’s share, which is discounted by 50% based on its high per capita allocation from the federal act. A list of the allocations by county can be found here.
  • $50 million is available for utilities to provide drinking water services to unserved, rural customers or to utilities under a federal consent decree. The KIA shall consider social, economic and environmental benefits in determining the allocations.
  • $49.9 million is available to supplement a project grant for a project with a cost in excess of a county’s allocation amount and other available grant sources. The social, economic and environmental benefits shall be considered in determining project allocations. KIA will receive $75,000 to administer the grant program.

The application deadline was Nov. 19, 2021; however KIA will make awards continuously throughout the year. All grant awardees must obligate the funds by Dec. 31, 2024.

The American Society of Civil Engineers in 2019 projected that Kentucky faces nearly $14.5 billion in water/wastewater infrastructure needs over the next 20 years, including over $8.2 billion in drinking water upgrades and $6.2 billion in sewer system improvements.

Information about the Cleaner Water Program, as well as grants for broadband expansion, school facility upgrades and vocational education center renovations, can be found at