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EPA Grants $8 Million to Maine for Drinking Water Programs

Release Date: 08/25/2003
Contact Information: Andrew Spejewski, EPA Press Office, 617-918-1014

BOSTON -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced today that it has awarded $8,004,100 to the state of Maine for its Drinking Water State Revolving Fund Program. The state can use the funds to support various drinking water programs within the state and to make low- interest loans to public and private community water systems to improve their facilities.

"Clean and safe drinking water is critical for public health," said Robert W. Varney, regional administrator for EPA's New England Office. "This grant will help Maine communities carry out important projects to make their drinking water supplies safer."

"Through the drinking water revolving loan fund, numerous communities in the state of Maine have been financially able to make significant water system improvements for the protection of public health," said Nancy Beardsley, director of the Maine Drinking Water Program. "Continued funding of the revolving loan fund will help water systems meet new regulations and continue to replace aging infrastructure."

Federal law requires that the state provide matching contributions to the revolving loan fund of 20 percent of the federal grant.

Grants to state drinking water revolving loan funds have been made since a 1996 amendment to the federal Safe Drinking Water Act. This year's grant to Maine follows grants of $7,789,100 and $8,052,500 in 2001 and 2002, respectively. EPA's Drinking Water Needs Survey Report from February 2001 indicated that Maine's drinking water infrastructure requires an investment of $498 million over the next 20 years.

Past projects funded by the revolving loan fund in Maine include:

    • $1,978,000 to the North Haven Water Department to construct a new water treatment plant.
    • $650,000 to the Madawaska Water District for development of a groundwater source to replace its surface water supply.
    • $170,000 for the Newport Water District for a new water main to resolve dead end water quality problems.
    • $145,000 to the Passamaquoddy Water District for installation of a roughing filter on their surface water supply.