TVA says Boone Dam repair brings over 100 jobs, millions of dollars to Tri-Cities

BOONE DAM PIC

TRI-CITIES, TN (WJHL)- In the wake a serious problem at Boone Dam that forced the dramatic lowering of Boone Lake, we’ve told you about the financial struggles for land and business owners here in the Tri-Cities.

Since 2014, TVA has been trying to stop water and sediment seeping from the riverbank below Boone Dam.  TVA lowered Boone Lake to assess the problem. The water levels won’t be back to normal until at least the year 2020 according to TVA.

But a year ago, Tennessee Valley Authority came out with a report that said fixing Boone Dam could have a huge positive economic impact in the Tri-Cities.

A year later, we found out if the TVA’s predictions came true.

“At the site right now we have approximately 150 personnel on site and they contribute nearly $5 million in wages to the area. In addition many of those 150 personnel are not native to the Tri-Cities area so there is additional revenue generated from temporary living expenses including housing restaurants and other services,” TVA Spokesperson Jim Hopson said.

Hopson said most of those are not local hires, but TVA does use local temporary employees and local companies for certain projects.

The 2015 TVA report said at the height of construction as many as 725 jobs a year may be generated, outputting a $100 million positive economic impact.

So when will that happen? “It’s difficult to say just yet. As I say this is 150 people working 24 hours a day so I mean we have quite a few folks out there and the amount of people we can put on the project is somewhat constrained by the limited area in which we have to work,” Hopson said.

Hopson said TVA is still on track to be done with the repairs between 2020 and 2022.

Next week TVA representatives will be in the Tri-Cities to give an update on the progress of the repairs.

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