Governor Tate Reeves announced Tuesday that the Delta Regional Authority has awarded a nearly $900,000 grant to the Mississippi Rural Water Association.
This grant will support the creation of a state-of-the-art water and wastewater facility to train operators in the state, according to Reeves’ office. The Governor authorized MsRWA to apply for this funding.
“This new facility will help provide a higher quality learning experience and improve emergency readiness for water operators throughout the state,” said Reeves. “Having dependable utilities is vital. This grant and the continued work of the Mississippi Rural Water Association will better ensure that our communities have the operators needed to maintain critical water and wastewater infrastructure.”
The grant will be used to help fund the construction of a $1.9 million centralized training facility in which apprentices will learn from industry experts, vendors, and regulatory authorities.
This training will ensure that communities within the Mississippi Rural Water Association will have better access to certified operators and reliable utility services.
Apprentices will have the opportunity to get paid while they learn as they spend 4,000 hours over two years gaining practical system experience from certified operators in the field. The training will include everything from plant operation to water quality analysis, and more. To complete the course, 288 hours of classroom training will also be required.
The centralized facility would locate the future operators near the Mississippi Emergency Management Agency, better preparing the state for future crises. The facility would replace the current status quo in which trainings take place at community halls and other locations as available throughout the state. The new facility will provide for a higher quality learning experience and an understanding of emergency readiness for operators.