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Infrastructure updates great news for Washington County

Staff Report • Aug 16, 2013 at 9:11 AM

A couple of stories in our paper this week have given us reason to be confident in at least two aspects of our local infrastructure. The first was news that the town of Jonesborough is increasing the capacity of its wastewater treatment plant.As Press staff writer Sue Guinn Legg reported in Tuesday’s paper, the Jonesborough Board of Mayor and Aldermen voted Monday to approve a $1.5 million bid for construction of an effluent outfall line from the town’s wastewater treatment plant to the Nolichucky River.The first phase of the project includes two new 500,000-gallon treatment basins that will triple the plant’s capacity and allow for expanded use of the Washington Industrial Park on U.S. Highway 11E in Telford.The second phase includes the new outflow line and a new pump station that will carry the plant’s effluent away from Little Limestone Creek that runs from downtown Jonesborough six miles southwest along Highway 81 South to the river.This is an important expansion that it will pave the way for more businesses to bring jobs to the Washington County Industrial Park. It also allows Jonesborough to expand its own sewer system and play a key role in the growth and development of that part of Washington County.Another important news item involving infrastructure was seen on the front page Wednesday. That’s when Press staff writer Gary B. Gray reported that the quality of Johnson City’s drinking water in the last calendar year had surpassed even the strictest requirements set by both the state of Tennessee and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.Water and sewer is among the most important and expensive services offered by a municipality. Still, few residents give much thought to those services until a line breaks and they are left without.It’s as the proverb and old blues song says: “You don’t miss the water until the well runs dry.”

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