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A hard hat and golden shovel await their use in a groundbreaking ceremony.

A groundbreaking ceremony for the tie in with Ridgecrest and Ferriday’s water systems has been scheduled for Nov. 23 at 10 a.m.

Local and state officials will converge at Ridgecrest’s park to commemorate years of work that went into improving water quality at the village. After the park ceremony, a reception will be held at Ridgecrest Baptist Church.

“This is a big deal for Ridgecrest,” said Mayor Veller Ray Carroll. “The public is invited to come and be with us at this event. A lot of work has gone into making this happen.”

Ridgecrest citizens have suffered from low water quality for years. Engineers and water system experts said the tie in with Ferriday, which has a new system, will alleviate the problems.

Earlier this year, Ridgecrest and Ferriday officials signed a water purchase contract.

Under the contract, Ridgecrest will purchase water from Ferriday for three years, eight months at the price of $4.70 per 1,000 gallons. Ridgecrest will have an option after the first contract has expired to renew it for another three years. 

Customers’ monthly bills will possibly average $85 per month for water, sewer and gas, Carroll said in an earlier Sentinelinterview.

The new rates will be going into effect Nov. 20, Carroll said Tuesday.

To bankroll the project, a Louisiana Community Development Block Grant (LCDBG) totaling $990,352 was used.

The project also entails sandblasting and cleaning of the interior and exterior of Ridgecrest’s water tower. 

Additionally, money will be used to purchase and install a new ground storage tank, install a water line from Ferriday’s water plant to Ridgecrest’s storage tank, purchase new radio-controlled water meters and install a handicap bathroom in city hall. The water line will run down Vidalia Drive.

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