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Biden-Harris Administration Announces Over $1 Million for Water Infrastructure in North Dakota

Christopher Freeman
Release Date

BISMARCK, N.D., Feb. 21, 2024 – Today, U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development State Director Erin Oban announced over $1 million in funding to the City of Napoleon for a water improvement project as part of President Biden’s Investing in America agenda.

“In the last few years, the people living and working in Napoleon, North Dakota, have experienced numerous water main breaks as parts of their community’s aging water infrastructure have stretched well-beyond its useful life,” said Oban. “President Biden’s announcement today of infrastructure investments included nearly $1.4 million – almost half of which is a grant – for the city of Napoleon. There’s a cost to investing in the infrastructure that allows us to live, work, and play in great places. Opportunities available through USDA Rural Development make these projects more within reach for our smallest communities and, ultimately, keep costs lower for our rural friends and neighbors.” 

Rural Drinking Water and Wastewater Infrastructure

USDA is financing this project through the Water and Waste Disposal Loan and Grant Program to help state and local governments, private nonprofits and federally recognized Tribes build and improve rural wastewater systems. The funding enables rural communities to expand access to clean and reliable drinking water, sanitary waste disposal and stormwater drainage.

The City of Napoleon will use a $758,000 loan and a $620,000 grant to remove the remaining seven blocks of cast iron water mains and replace them with PVC water mains. The gate valves would be replaced, hydrants replaced, and new service lines and curb stops would be installed in the City of Napoleon. These remaining blocks of cast iron have had numerous breaks in recent years. 

full list of projects from today’s announcement is available online.

USDA’s most recent Rural America at a Glance report, published in November 2023, signals that the Biden-Harris Administration’s investments in rural American infrastructure, jobs and overall recovery are working. Specifically, the report found that the rural population is growing after a decade of overall population loss, with growth of approximately a quarter percent from 2020 to 2022. It also showed that rural employment levels and annual growth rates have nearly returned to those seen in the years prior to the pandemic. In particular, the emergence of the clean energy economy is a growing employment sector, with clean energy jobs employing more than 243,000 workers in nonmetropolitan counties in 2021, and those jobs have continued to grow through the Biden-Harris Administration’s investments since. The rural population is also experiencing a decline in poverty. In 2021, 9.7 percent fewer nonmetropolitan counties experienced persistent poverty (county-level poverty rates of 20 percent or higher over the last 30 years) compared with a decade earlier.

USDA Rural Development provides loans and grants to help expand economic opportunities, create jobs and improve the quality of life for millions of Americans in rural areas. This assistance supports infrastructure improvements; business development; housing; community facilities such as schools, public safety and health care; and high-speed internet access in rural, tribal and high-poverty areas. Visit the Rural Data Gateway to learn how and where these investments are impacting rural America.

USDA touches the lives of all Americans each day in so many positive ways. Under the Biden-Harris Administration, USDA is transforming America’s food system with a greater focus on more resilient local and regional food production, fairer markets for all producers, ensuring access to safe, healthy and nutritious food in all communities, building new markets and streams of income for farmers and producers using climate-smart food and forestry practices, making historic investments in infrastructure and clean energy capabilities in rural America, and committing to equity across the Department by removing systemic barriers and building a workforce more representative of America. To learn more, visit www.usda.gov.