The town of St. Joseph is finally getting a brand new water system and Governor John Bel Edwards was on hand today for the groundbreaking. Deputy Chief of Staff Julie Baxter Payer says this was a very important milestone for the Tensas Parish town.
"We'll be able to make this water system one that the town of St. Joseph can maintain and carry forward, and know that they can have clean, clear water from their taps," said Payer.
Edwards issued a public health emergency for St. Joe after lead was detected in its water system in December. Payer says it's incredible how quickly the more than $9 million dollars came together to make this crucial project possible.
"We're looking at having this done by the end of September," said Payer. "That's more than 10 months earlier than what had originally been played. This is a priority for the governor."
Payer says more than 12 miles of new pipe will be laid, 525 new water meters installed, and new fire hydrants placed. She says their office along with the Department of Health is going to continue to ensure that the town of 1200 has the water they need in the meantime.
"We have water buffalos out there that are stocked each week for drinking water while this is going on," said Payer.