Cumberland Times-News

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March 24, 2013

$4.2 million USDA loan will allow water/sewer projects to continue

Forthcoming funding will be used for Mount Savage, Jennings Run improvements

CUMBERLAND — The Allegany County commissioners were informed Thursday that a U.S. Department of Agriculture loan for $4.2 million will be forthcoming next week for the ongoing improvements to the Mount Savage water distribution system and the Jennings Run sanitary sewer system.

Jason Bennett, the county’s director of finance, said during the regular meeting of the commissioners that the loan is for 1.875 percent paid over a 40-year term.

“The USDA is doing us a favor to get this done before the (federal) budget fiasco hits,” said Bennett.

The debt service payment on the loan wil cost the county about $157,000 annually, according to Bennett.

In other county news, the dissolution of the Rawlings Water Company continues as the county moves forward in taking over water service to that area.

Paul Kahl, who represents the Rawlings system, said that the USDA has offered funding in the form of a $189,000 loan and a $556,000 grant for the next phase of improvements.

The commissioners voted to approve the application for the funding package.

A block grant of $800,000 was the initial primary source of funding for the needed improvements.

Also, the commissioners passed code home rule bill 2-13, which will give homeowners a $500 annual tax credit for installing a sprinkler system in their home.

Westernport resident Tim Dayton, who is chairman of the State Fire Prevention Commission, was pleased with the decision.

“I want to thank you for doing this. It insures the public’s safety and the safety of our firefighters,” said Dayton.

The tax credit is for residential automatic sprinkler systems in one- or two-family dwellings. Properties in both incorporated and unincorporated areas are eligible.

Attorney Bill Rudd said the tax credit goes into effect on July 1 and can be utilized for a three-year period.

Greg Larry can be contacted at glarry@times-news.com.

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