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After weeks without running water, disaster declaration is authorized for Tuluksak

Village hasn’t had running water in 3 weeks
Fire burns building in Tuluksak
Fire burns building in Tuluksak(Richelle Gregory)
Published: Feb. 8, 2021 at 6:46 PM AKST
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - Gov. Mike Dunleavy has authorized a disaster declaration for the village of Tuluksak after a fire destroyed its washeteria and water plant on Jan. 16.

By activating the disaster declaration, it gives the village up to $1 million in disaster relief funding.

“Since the loss of the Tuluksak water system, my administration has worked with local partners, including the Yukon-Kuskokwim Health Corporation and many others, to ensure the people of Tuluksak have constant access to drinking water and that the ice road is maintained,” said Dunleavy.

The village has not had running water since the fire occurred, but have received donated bottled water, according to officials.

In a press release from Dunleavy’s office, the declaration provides short term and immediate help to get temporary water facilities and potable water to the village.

“The health and safety of Alaskans is a priority. We will continue to provide support to the people of Tuluksak,” said Major General Torrence Saxe, commissioner of the Alaska Department of Military and Veterans Affairs.

Officials are working to get a water pump from Bethel to the village by using the ice road. But it could be weeks until that can happen due to weather conditions and COVID-19. With the new water pump, the village can then filter water from the Kuskokwim River.

Currently, the village of Tuluksak is currently under a boil order.

Officials say it could cost around $6 million to rebuild a new washeteria and water plant for the village of Tuluksak.

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