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EPA Awards More Than $21 Million to Rhode Island to Support Local Clean Water Projects Across the State

09/13/2018
Contact Information: 
John Senn (senn.john@epa.gov)
(617) 918-1019

(BOSTON) – Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced the State of Rhode Island was awarded a total of $21,884,000 in Clean Water and Drinking Water State Revolving Loan Fund (SRF) grants to finance community-based water infrastructure projects, such as upgrades to municipal sewage plants and public drinking water systems.

"Communities across Rhode Island will enjoy cleaner water and make important infrastructure upgrades thanks to this funding," said EPA New England Regional Administrator Alexandra Dunn. "These low-cost loans further EPA's commitment to ensuring American communities have access to clean water, safe drinking water and the infrastructure necessary to support local needs."

"The imperative for clean water is never more obvious than in the summertime, when Rhode Islanders flock to Narragansett Bay, beaches, and waterways to cool off, fish, boat, and just relax," said Janet Coit, Director of the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management. "Rhode Island can leverage this much-needed EPA grant money to fund a wide array of projects to improve the vitality of our state's waters. DEM is grateful to Senator Jack Reed and our entire Congressional Delegation for fighting to maintain robust funding of these critical SRF grants."

The total amount of funding came through separate grants to the Rhode Island Infrastructure Bank (RIIB) in the amount of $10,777,000 for its Clean Water SRF program and $11,107,000 for its Drinking Water SRF program. With the funds awarded to the state, the RIIB will work in conjunction with the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (DEM) and the Rhode Island Department of Health (DOH) to fund a series of long- and short-term community-based projects that address high priority water quality and health based concerns.

DEM and DOH will oversee the engineering and construction aspects of the Clean Water and Drinking Water SRF programs, respectively, as well as the individual projects funded by it, while the RIIB is the financial manager of both funds.

Under the Clean Water and Drinking Water SRF programs, EPA provides grants to all 50 states plus Puerto Rico to capitalize state water loan programs. States contribute an additional 20 percent to match federal grants. EPA also provides direct grant funding for the District of Columbia, U.S. Virgin Islands, American Samoa, Guam, and the Commonwealth of Northern Marianas. Since 1987, the SRFs have provided more than $160 billion in financial assistance to 38,000 water quality infrastructure projects and 14,000 drinking water projects.

Under the Drinking Water SRF, states provide various types of assistance, including financing to improving drinking water treatment, fixing leaky or old pipes, improving source of water supply, and replacing or constructing finished water storage tanks. Clean Water SRF programs provide loans to construct municipal wastewater facilities, control nonpoint sources of pollution, build decentralized wastewater treatment systems, create green infrastructure projects and protect estuaries.

For more information on the Clean Water State Revolving Loan Fund, visit https://www.epa.gov/cwsrf.

For more information on the Drinking Water State Revolving Loan Fund, visit https://www.epa.gov/drinkingwatersrf.