What is SWIFIA?
The State infrastructure financing authority WIFIA (SWIFIA) program, authorized by Congress in section 4201 of America’s Water Infrastructure Act (AWIA) of 2018, is a new loan program exclusively for State infrastructure financing authority borrowers.
For FY 2021, EPA has approximately $1 billion in financing available. In FY 2020, EPA invited the California State Water Resources Control Board, Iowa Finance Authority, and Rhode Island Infrastructure Bank to apply for loans totaling $695 million.
Eligible borrowers are exclusively State infrastructure financing authorities. EPA defines State infrastructure financing authority as the State entity established or designated by the Governor of a State to receive a capitalization grant provided by, or otherwise carry out the requirements of, title VI of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act (33 U.S.C. 1381 et. seq.) or section 1452 of the Safe Drinking Water Act (42 U.S.C. 300j–12).
The SWIFIA project must be a combination of eligible development and implementation projects, each of which is eligible for assistance under section 603(c) of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act (33 U.S.C. § 1383(c)) or section 1452(a)(2) of the Safe Drinking Water Act (42 U.S.C. §§ 300j–12(a)(2)) for which a State infrastructure financing authority submits to EPA in a single request.
Important Program Features
- $20 million: Minimum SWIFIA project size.
- 49 percent: Maximum portion of eligible SWIFIA project costs that EPA can finance.
- 35 years: Maximum final maturity date from the date of first disbursement.
- 5 years: Maximum time that repayment may be deferred after the date of first disbursement.
- Interest rate will be equal to or greater than the U.S. Treasury rate of a similar maturity at the date of closing.
- Projects must be creditworthy and have a dedicated source of revenue.
- National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), Davis-Bacon, American Iron and Steel, and all other federal cross-cutter provisions apply.
Types of Credit Assistance
EPA is offering senior, parity loans under SWIFA. Prospective SWIFIA borrowers may request one the following loan structures:
- EPA adopts the State infrastructure financing authority’s existing indenture; or
- The State infrastructure financing authority accepts EPA’s standard terms.
SWIFIA loans are available for SRF projects which are ready to proceed. For construction projects, EPA considers an SRF project ready to proceed if its construction will commence no later than 24 months after the Letter of Interest (LOI) deadline. For planning and design projects, the requirement for construction to commence no later than 24 months after the LOI deadline is not applicable.