USDA Invests in Drinking Water Quality and Wastewater Management for 784,000 Rural Residents and Businesses in 42 States
Projects will Improve Water Pressure, Address Public Health and Environmental Issues
Harrisburg, Pa., Nov. 19, 2019 – U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Deputy Under Secretary for Rural Development Donald “DJ” LaVoy today announced that the department is investing $635 million in 122 projects to improve water systems and wastewater handling services in rural communities in 42 states. USDA is funding the projects through the Water and Waste Disposal Loan and Grant program.
“These investments will bring reliable infrastructure to rural communities. They will replace old, fragile, leaking water pipes with new ones and allow upgrades to water handling systems that are decades old, boosting water pressure and cutting water losses. Working with our partners, these investments create jobs and improve public health and safety,” LaVoy said. “Under the leadership of President Trump and Agriculture Secretary Perdue, USDA is committed to partnering with rural communities to help them improve their infrastructure, because when rural America thrives, all of America thrives.”
Eligible applicants include rural cities, towns and water districts. The funds can be used for drinking water, stormwater drainage and waste disposal systems in rural communities that meet population limits.
State Director Curt Coccodrilli today announced that Pennsylvania is investing over $30 million through the Water and Waste Disposal Loan and Grant program. “Water infrastructure systems that provide cleaner, more efficient water resources help to create stronger, more sustainable communities and Together, America Prospers!” Coccodrilli said.
Below are examples in Pennsylvania of water and wastewater projects in rural communities that will receive funding:
- Weaverland Valley Authority will use a loan of $23,512,000 and grant of $2,209,000 to construct a new regional wastewater treatment plant to serve existing users located in East Earl township and the borough of Terre Hill. It will construct sewage collection and conveyance lines to extend the system to new users located in the unincorporated areas of East Earl township including the village of Goodville, Lancaster County, Pa. This project is the result of the planning and needs assessments in conjunction with the Consent Order and Agreement with Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection.
- The Municipal Authority of the Borough of Milford is receiving a loan of $2,428,000 and grant of $413,300 to make improvements to the authority's public water system consisting of replacement of cast-iron water mains to address aging infrastructure, replacement of the existing influent pumping station and a new water storage tank. Also included is an extension of the water main to the existing Keystone Park Subdivision currently served by private wells that have ongoing issues with elevated levels of sulfur, iron and manganese in the groundwater.
- Central City Water Authority will use a $2,386,000 loan to make improvements to the water system to address aging infrastructure and to increase raw water, treated water, and service water storage capacities. It will also provide adequate time for the proper maintenance of tanks, filters and wells through the rehabilitation of two existing water storage tanks, the replacement of two water storage tanks, an additional clear well tank and improvements at the water treatment plant.
In April 2017, President Donald J. Trump established the Interagency Task Force on Agriculture and Rural Prosperity to identify legislative, regulatory and policy changes that could promote agriculture and prosperity in rural communities. In January 2018, Secretary Perdue presented the Task Force’s findings to President Trump. These findings included 31 recommendations to align the federal government with state, local and tribal governments to take advantage of opportunities that exist in rural America. Increasing investments in rural infrastructure is a key recommendation of the task force.
To view the report in its entirety, please view the Report to the President of the United States from the Task Force on Agriculture and Rural Prosperity (PDF, 5.4 MB). In addition, to view the categories of the recommendations, please view the Rural Prosperity infographic (PDF, 190 KB).
USDA Rural Development provides loans and grants to help expand economic opportunities and create jobs 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 areas. For more information, visit www.rd.usda.gov/pa.
USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer and lender.