copyright the Chronicle January 10, 2018
by Joseph Gresser
NEWPORT CENTER — When voters here went to the polls last April to decide whether or not to approve a $745,000 bond to improve the village water system, they took a risk.
Town officials said the town might be eligible for a sizeable grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Rural Development program, but they would not find out for sure unless the bond was approved.
Townspeople leapt into the unknown, approving the bond measure by a vote of 95 to 13, and they were rewarded when the USDA approved a $695,000 grant soon afterward.
Work on the project, which includes drilling two new wells, putting in a treatment facility to remove arsenic and manganese from water, and installing the electrical and plumbing connections needed to keep the new wells flowing, is scheduled to start soon, said Newport Center Clerk Denise Daigle Tuesday.
“The grant funds will kick in after the town spends a couple of hundreds of thousand dollars,” she said, speaking of the town’s share of the project’s costs.
Ms. Daigle said it is “way too early to tell” if the grant will lower the cost of water to people now on the system.
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