U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Illinois State Director, Douglas Wilson today announced that USDA is investing $6 million in 5 projects to improve rural water infrastructure in Illinois.
“Our ability to partner with communities in ensuring safe and affordable water systems has been an important part of our agency for decades” Wilson said. “Safe water is a vital part of a community’s health and economic development.”
USDA is making the investments through the Water and Waste Disposal Loan and Grant program. Rural cities and towns, water districts and other eligible entities can use the funds for drinking water, stormwater drainage and waste disposal systems in rural communities with 10,000 or fewer residents.
Below are examples of projects announced today that show how USDA is partnering to improve rural water and wastewater infrastructure.
The Village of Toledo will use a $1.5 million loan and grant combination to construct a third well, replace waterline and rehab an existing elevated water tank. The replacement of 5500 square feet of water main will alleviate health and sanitary concerns. This project will serve 1,238 residents of the Village of Toledo which is located in Cumberland County. This project enables the Village to continue providing safe potable water.
The Village of Hammond is receiving a $850,000 loan and grant combination to renovate the village's current water system to alleviate a health hazard that exists due to high nitrate levels present in their water distribution system. The project will add a chlorine injection point at the end of the treatment process, replace 2" inch water mains with 4" water mains and loop the system to avoid dead end lines. The project will also replace all current manual read water meters with remote broadcasting, continuous interval reading meters. This project will also alleviate the numerous line breaks within the system which causes either a shortage of water or requires their residents to continually boil water for human consumption.
USDA is announcing investments today in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Montana, North Carolina, New Mexico, New York, Nevada, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Washington and West Virginia.
Congress appropriated $2.9 billion for USDA Water and Environmental Program loans and grants in fiscal year 2019. USDA will make additional funding announcements in coming weeks.
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.