LITTLE LEATHERWOOD, Ky. (WYMT) - It's something that you might take for granted, but many in Eastern Kentucky still do not have access to clean drinking water.
That's going to change soon for some Perry County residents.
The Kentucky Division of Abandoned Mine Lands is providing grant money for a $3 million, multi-site water line project.
David Adams is a homeowner in the Little Leatherwood community.
He and his neighbors have relied on well water for years. He says the water there has never quite tasted right.
"We have people here in Little Leatherwood that has a lot worse water than I do on private wells. They just can't seem to get their water adequate," he said.
A recent AML groundwater study found elevated levels of contamination connected to prior coal mining operations in the area.
"If the groundwater contamination in the household water wells can be attributed to that mining, then there's funding available to run public water to those areas," explained AML division director Robert Scott.
Crews broke ground on the waterline project Tuesday. When it's finished some 269 households in Perry County will have access to clean drinking water.
"[It's a] big step up for the community. I've lived here for 40 years and 40 years ago I'd never dreamed that we'd have a water system," said Adams.
Officials say the funds help people who live in remote parts of the state, where running water lines typically wouldn't be cost-effective.
The work is expected to take about six months to complete.