County receives #036;750,000 grant

Published 12:00 am Friday, June 6, 2008

HAMILTON TOWNSHIP— Efforts to expand business and industry in the far western end of Lawrence County have gotten a shot in the arm from the Ohio Department of Development.

That state agency has approved a $750,000 grant to help pay for a new $850,000 sewer system that will serve the Rumpke recycling facility, the proposed Chatham Steel plant and other future business developments that could be built on a 90-acre site in that area of Hamilton Township. Ralph Kline, assistant director of the Ironton-Lawrence County Community Action Organization, said the sewer plant is one part of more than $7 million in infrastructure improvements being made to develop the industrial capabilities in western Lawrence County.

“If you remember, one of the problems we had with Rumpke was the lack of a sewer system,” Kline said. “Hopefully we can build a package treatment facility to serve Chatham and other new industry.”

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The grant was welcome news to local officials.

“I think this is another step in improving infrastructure. I think once it (infrastructure) is in place, I think it’s a matter of time before things develop,” Stephens said. “It not only helps Chatham but other types of business as well.”

The county has already gotten $500,000 in Community Development Block grant funds, $120,000 from the Governor’s Office of Appalachia, and $80,000 in other funds for other aspects its Industrial Site Improvement project. The balance of the cost will come from the private sector. Kline said the industrial improvements include a railroad spur, sewer and land acquisitions.

Kline said the sewer plant will likely be a membrane system much like the one being built to serve Union-Rome Sewer District customers.

Construction should begin next year.