Gov. Beshear Announces Over $8 Million to Support Cleaner Water and Nonprofits in Perry County

HAZARD, Ky. (Jan. 24, 2023) – Today, in keeping with his priorities to support health and safety, along with fostering economic development in the commonwealth, Gov. Andy Beshear announced over $8 million in awards for Perry County, including waterline updates, sewer infrastructure projects and nonprofit assistance.

“Clean water is a basic human right,” Gov. Beshear said. “As Governor, and also as a dad, I want to make sure all of our families can turn on their faucets and know that water is safe to give their children. I was proud to visit Perry County today, where we are improving water safety and service for thousands of families. We are also supporting seven local nonprofits that make such a difference in this community.”

As part of his ongoing commitment to help Eastern Kentucky rebuild after devastating flooding six months ago, Gov. Beshear also announced a second location for new, high-ground homes.

“The Cleaner Water Project funding, along with the other appropriated dollars that are coming to Perry County, will be instrumental in our continuing efforts to rebuild this community,” said Rep. Chris Fugate, who represents Perry, Breathitt and Owsley Counties. “Though the last six months have been a trying time for my neighbors, I can’t help but feel as if we are beginning to turn a new leaf, and it will be exciting to witness the benefits of this funding.”

Gov. Beshear started by announcing Cleaner Water Program (CWP) and Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) Awards.

City of Buckhorn
Gov. Beshear announced $743,475 in ARC funds to provide essential sewer and water infrastructure to Buckhorn. This will allow a new water treatment plant to be constructed and operated.

“ARC funds have done great things in Buckhorn and across Eastern Kentucky,” said Mayor Paul Robert Turner. “This project will bolster our sewer and water service, ensuring we have reliable infrastructure to support future economic growth. Announcements like this get us closer to the future we all want for Buckhorn.”

City of Hazard
Gov. Beshear announced:

  • $1,977,000 in ARC funds for sewer line improvements in downtown Hazard. This project will improve sewer service for 2,220 households and 280 businesses.
  • $1,017,848 in ARC funds to replace a waterline along Kentucky Highway 476, improving water service for 1,781 households and 219 businesses.
  • $972,000 in ARC funds for new waterlines in the Christopher Community in Hazard. This will improve water service for 181 households and seven businesses.
  • $304,160 in ARC funds to install 1,450 linear feet of waterline to improve water service for 621 households and 29 businesses.
  • $238,521 in CWP funds to improve water service to eight homes in the Napier Ridge Road area.

Perry County Fiscal Court
Gov. Beshear announced:

  • $1.5 million in ARC funds to replace waterlines in the former City of Vicco water distribution system. The project will improve water safety and service for 228 households and two businesses.
  • $1,225,600 in ARC funds to extend sewer service to households on Upper Second Creek Road. Gov. Beshear also announced the commitment of $1.4 million from the CWP for this project. The new line will provide sewer service for 53 households in the project service area.

“The ARC and Gov. Beshear have been great partners to Perry County,” said Perry County Judge/Executive Scott Alexander. “The Cleaner Water funds are also going to be a huge help for the Upper Second Creek sewer extension project. These projects are moving Perry County forward, and we are excited to keep working toward a better tomorrow.”

Nonprofit Assistance Fund
Gov. Beshear announced seven awards from his Nonprofit Assistance Fund, which helps organizations across Kentucky recover from the effects of the pandemic. The fund provides one-time direct relief payments to support long-term sustainability of eligible nonprofits.

“As a nonprofit Primary Employment Organization, Go-Hire focuses our services primarily in assisting other nonprofits and community service organizations. We have assisted in providing staffing during times of hardship and disaster, such as the COVID-19 pandemic and the flooding that devasted Eastern Kentucky. We desire to continue that work,” said Christina White, president, Go-Hire Employment & Development Inc. “Go-Hire seeks to better the lives of all we serve. Funding from Team Kentucky Nonprofit Assistance Fund will assist us in that mission. We are most appreciative of this funding award.”

  • $100,000 to the Challenger Learning Center of KY Inc., an organization that provides a first-class, space-based learning environment where schoolchildren, families, senior citizens, corporate teams and other community members “fly” simulated space missions. The center brings hands-on education to students in Eastern Kentucky and beyond.

“The Challenger Learning Center of Kentucky has served the students of Eastern Kentucky for 24 years, inspiring them to reach higher and explore further by providing exciting, hands-on STEM programs,” said Challenger Learning Center Director Tom Cravens. “With the funds provided by the Team Kentucky Nonprofit Assistance Fund, we are dedicated to continuing this mission, expanding our summer camps, community programs and outreach to schools across the region.”

  • $3,993 to the Salvation Army of Perry County.

“The Salvation Army expresses our gratitude to the Team Kentucky Nonprofit Assistance Fund and Gov. Beshear,” said Major Tom Louden, divisional commander, the Salvation Army, Kentucky-Tennessee Division. “These funds will allow us to continue ‘Doing the Most Good’ in Perry County, where people come to us in times of both personal and natural disasters. We thank the Governor for consistently thinking of and meeting the needs of our neighbors.”

“The mission of Redbud Financial Alternatives Inc. (Redbud) is to transform credit from an obstacle to an opportunity. We provide an alternative to predatory lenders that take advantage of individuals, families and communities facing hard times,” said Community Development Financial Institution Director James Caudill. “Our financial services help Eastern Kentuckians navigate difficult economic situations, like the one many are experiencing due to the flood. With the support of the Team Kentucky Nonprofit Assistance Fund, we’ll continue using our financial products to help flood survivors achieve housing and overall financial stability.”

  • $100,000 to the Housing Development Alliance (HDA). HDA is a nonprofit affordable housing developer. Their programs have helped more than 2,900 low-income people in rural southeastern Kentucky become new homeowners, make home-improving repairs and break free of debt. In addition to the Nonprofit Assistance Fund award, the Team Eastern Kentucky Flood Relief Fund committed $600,000 in funds to build eight new homes in partnership with the HDA and Homes Inc. The fund is also providing $75,000 per home for building materials.

“The Housing Development Alliance is so grateful to Gov. Beshear and Team Kentucky for this much-needed funding,” said Executive Director R. Scott McReynolds. “From COVID-19 to flood disasters in 2021 and 2022, we’ve seen the level of need in our community continue to rise. This funding will keep us strong and will help us expand our construction crews from 5 to 10 as we work to serve the growing affordable housing needs of low-income Eastern Kentuckians.”

  • $40,859 to the Eastern Kentucky Concentrated Employment Program (EKCEP). EKCEP prepares, advances and expands the workforce of Eastern Kentucky. It is providing more and better job opportunities, a better-educated and better-prepared workforce and a more diverse economy in the region.

“This funding award comes at a very critical time. Our region’s response to last year’s flooding is ongoing and the need for additional resources to continue recovery efforts remains paramount,” said Director of Finance Tonya Collins. “EKCEP is very appreciative of this additional support as we work alongside our many partners to provide a workforce response to the floods of 2022 and an economy that is in transition.”

  • $37,058 to the Appalachian Arts Alliance. This organization’s mission is to activate the community through arts education, entrepreneurship and practice. They currently operate many community arts education and creative community programs, including Hazard Arts Academy, HazART and Thursdays on the Triangle.

“The Appalachian Arts Alliance is grateful for the support we have received from Governor Beshear and the Team Kentucky Nonprofit Assistance Fund,” said Executive Director Tim Deaton. “Starting in 2022, our organization found ourselves with a significant deficiency from lost revenue due to the pandemic. The support from our city, county and state governments show us that our leaders understand the impact and benefits of having thriving arts organizations in our communities and in our state as a whole.”