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Tuesday, July 23, 2024

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Gov. Whitmer endorses Kamala Harris for president, says she's not leaving Michigan; Grilled by lawmakers on the Trump assassination attempt, Secret Service director says, 'We failed;' Teachers rally at national convention in Houston; Opioid settlement fund fuels anti-addiction battle in Indiana; Nonprofit agency says corporate donations keep programs going.

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Democrats consolidate support behind Vice President Harris, Republicans threaten legal action over changes to the presidential ticket, and a possible bipartisan consensus forms on the failure of the Secret Service to protect former President Trump.

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It's grass-cutting season and with it, rural lawn mower races, Montana's drive-thru blood project is easing shortages, rural Americans spend more on food when transportation costs are tallied, and a lack of good childcare is thwarting rural business owners.

New federal funds earmarked for SD rural water projects

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Wednesday, June 5, 2024   

Some rural South Dakotans struggle to get good drinking water but the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation has awarded two local communities with grants to help change it.

Nearly $13 million in WaterSMART Drought Resiliency grants are slated for projects in Eagle Butte and Day County. The Mni Wašté Water Company, run by the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe, will receive $2.8 million to pipe water 10 miles northwest of the community to supply 17 existing residences and 20 being constructed.

Leo Fischer, executive director, Mni Wašté Water Company and enrolled member of Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe, said the water company started planning this project in 1993 and in the meantime, the people living there have had to haul their water.

"It's more of a pain than it is anything, because you haul it in the back of a vehicle," Fischer pointed out. "In the wintertime, everything freezes up."

Piped water is important in the region, because area groundwater wells are of poor quality, must run deep into the ground and have proven unreliable.

To the east, the WEB Water Development Association is slated to receive nearly $10 million to build about 40 miles of pipeline, supplying more than 700 people with drinking water in the city of Waubay and in rural Day County.

Shane Phillips, general manager of the association, said it feels ironic to be doing a project in Day County, which is known for having ample water.

"It's the true quality of the water that's not great in Day County," Phillips observed. "There's total dissolved solids. It's really high in minerals."

Phillips added the company hopes to break ground in 2025 on its project piping and treating potable water from the Missouri River. The Bureau of Reclamation has made WaterSMART grants in 11 states this year.


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