Funding for septic system repairs can cover between 25 percent and 60 percent of repair costs, depending on the severity of the problem and household location.
Areas that are generally eligible include the lands that drain to Coahulla, Mill, and Ball Play Creeks of the Conasauga River Watershed.
Residents in these areas are also generally eligible for funding for septic system pump-outs and agricultural projects where best management practices are implemented.
Cost-share assistance will cover 50 percent of costs for pump-outs and up to 85 percent of project costs for agricultural projects.
Examples of BMPs associated with agricultural projects include alternative watering systems to provide clean water for livestock; cross-fencing to establish rotational grazing practices; heavy-use area protection for feeding and other areas that have become disturbed; stream crossings, walkways, and travel lanes for livestock; and others depending upon specific needs.
BMPs are designed to reduce erosion, improve grazing efficiency, and conserve water.
Overall, 10 septic system repairs, 60 septic system pump-outs, and 10 agricultural projects are anticipated to receive funding.
All projects funded by this grant are intended to improve water quality.
Funding is provided by a Clean Water Act grant from the Tennessee Department of Agriculture and administered by Southeast Tennessee Resource Conservation and Development Council, a local, community-based nonprofit organization. Local contractors will provide septic system repairs with technical assistance provided by the Tennessee Division of Groundwater Protection.
The Natural Resource Conservation Service will assist with agricultural projects. Financial assistance will be considered and implemented with respect to private property rights and under voluntary landowner participation only.
These projects are funded, in part, under an agreement with the Tennessee Department of Agriculture, Nonpoint Source Program and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
For more information about this grant or to check eligibility, please call Joe Simpson, Watershed Project Coordinator, Southeast Tennessee Resource Conservation and Development Council, at 423-718-9445; or email jsimpson.setnrcd @gmail.com.