Approve Cameron Water Project Funds

Getting clean, dependable water supplies to residents of rural areas is an ongoing challenge in West Virginia. Little by little, communities and public service districts have whittled down the number of people who have to depend on private wells.

Cameron officials are ready to take an important step by extending municipal water lines to serve another 52 customers in the Green Valley Road and Tunnel Hill Road areas. That will require laying about 3.3 miles of new water line.

It is expected the project will cost $1.7 million, which is far beyond the community’s ability to fund.

Marshall County commissioners already have pledged $103,000 toward the cost, however. And, as Cameron City Council members were told this week, a Small Cities Block Grant of $1.2 million should be available for the work.

That leaves about $404,000 needed. Council members are seeking that amount in a loan through the state Infrastructure and Capacity Development Program. The money would be repaid over 30 years, at a 1 percent interest rate.

This is precisely the type of quality of life program both the federal and state programs were established to support.

State and federal officials should approve funding for the Cameron water project as soon as possible.