BY LENA MITCHELL
Daily Journal Corinth Bureau
CORINTH – After months of waiting, phased work can begin to construct the Alcorn County Surface Water Program to deliver water from the Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway to the Corinth water system and its customers.
The Corinth Utility Commission received a permit last week from the Tennessee Valley Authority approving its interbasin water transfer request, the final approval needed to proceed. The commission already had received permits from the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
“The utility commission met Monday and documented the good news of the permit,” said Ron Lilly, general manager of Corinth Gas & Water. “Cook Coggin Engineers has been retained to do the final design, and we'll be constructing the project in three phases.”
The engineering company has been working with the utility for several years and has preliminary designs ready, said Cook Coggin president Kent Geno.
The first phase of the nearly $37 million project is construction of a water treatment plant on property the utility owns about 7 miles east of Corinth.
Next comes connecting the treatment plant to the city water system, and the final step will be to install a water intake system on the Tenn-Tom.
The water treatment system is expensive and requires the longest time to design and construct, according to information provided by Geno.
The three phases have been spread over three fiscal years to help with financing. The utility is seeking additional funding sources to combine with a $7.5 million Water Resource Development Act appropriation finalized last month.
“This is about a four-and-a-half year project,” Lilly said.