Rahall Warns of Consequences from Infrastructure Cuts

From a Rep. Nick Rahall Release

BECKLEY, W.Va. – U.S. Rep. Nick Rahall (D-W.Va.) on Tuesday decried proposed cuts to federal infrastructure programs that deliver water and wastewater services,

highlighting more than $22 million in grants and loans from USDA Rural Development in Mingo County alone as an example of investment that improves health and creates jobs in southern West Virginia.

“When we invest in America, we put Americans to work,” said Rahall. “Without basic services, like clean water, even the health of families can falter.  And as for highways, if people can’t get to work safely or commerce clogs in tunnels, on bridges, or through locks on our rivers, we as a nation lose.  Our competition throughout the world then gains a competitive advantage.  For the short term, and in the long run, strengthening the foundations of our economy pays great dividends throughout our economy.”

Speaking at the Dingess Phase II Project groundbreaking ceremony in Mingo County, Rahall predicted cuts to infrastructure investments will adversely affect efforts to restore the health of the nation’s economy and make it more difficult to shrink the budget deficit.  Rahall criticized recent proposals by the new Majority in the U.S. House of Representatives to end Congressional earmarks and cut domestic spending, disproportionately slashing funding for federal programs to build infrastructure.

“I have long been convinced, and will continue to preach, that the price of doing nothing, the price of letting our water and wastewater services deteriorate,  the cost of our highways and bridges crumbling, the debt that grows as our  broadband digital divide widens are not ‘financial burdens’ as some see them.  To me, they are the very basic things the people elect their government to fix. Put simply: these are investments in our Country’s future,” said Rahall.

The Dingess water main extension project is receiving USDA Rural Development loan funds of $2,208,000 to extend safe, reliable public water service to approximately 119 households in the Harvey Magisterial District of Mingo County.  The project will serve residents of Breeden and Lowney with water supplied by Mingo Public Service District’s Naugatuck water treatment plant.  Residents in the service area currently rely on wells, springs, and cisterns as their only source of water.  These sources often produce water of poor quality and are subject to contamination.

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