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USDA Invests in Water and Wastewater Infrastructure Across North Dakota

Michael Stepien
Release Date

The USDA is investing $1.2 billion to help rebuild and improve rural water infrastructure for 936,000 rural Americans living in 46 states. Over $19.5 million in loans and grants will be invested in five projects across North Dakota.

“Providing clean water to members of our rural communities is critical to ensuring a good quality of life and economic viability,” Clare Carlson, USDA Rural Development state director said. “The USDA is committed to building modern water infrastructure for our rural citizens across North Dakota.”  

New Rockford will receive a $4,526,000 grant combined with a $4,734,000 loan for a water main replacement, water tower painting, water treatment plant improvements, and storm water improvements. New Rockford's current infrastructure is aging and needs replacement/updating. This project will address the infrastructure needs of the residents of New Rockford and will provide them with a sustainable water system for years to come.

In Langdon, a $2,169,000 grant will be combined with a $2,731,000 loan for water/sanitary sewer main improvements. The current system serves a population of 1,863. Parts of the system are more than 50 years old, are undersized and were placed at too shallow of depth, which resulted in freezing in the winter. The replacement of water, sewer and storm sewer mains funded with the project will address the infiltration, undersized pipe, and depth issues of the current system. In addition, the improvements will allow the city to obsolete one sanitary lift station to help reduce ongoing operating costs.

New Salem will receive a $1,613,000 grant and a $2,084,000 loan to replace approximately 7,590 feet of cast iron pipe and approximately 3,875 feet of sanitary sewer pipe in the city. New Salem's current infrastructure was mostly installed in the 1940's and is approaching the end of its useful life. This project is being done in conjunction with a USDA Rural Development Community Facilities loan of $1,253,000 to be used for complete replacement of New Salem's streets once the underground pipes have been replaced.

In Dodge, a grant of $896,507 combined with a $300,000 loan will help finance the stabilization pond improvement project. The wastewater collection system and wastewater stabilization ponds were originally constructed in 1957, and the wastewater stabilization pond has been modified several times throughout the years. The reclamation will include dirt work to increase the pond depth and shaping of berms, access road grading, replacing existing piping and valves, new parameter fencing and access gate, general silt work and mowing.

Mercer will receive a grant of $221,800 along with a $287,000 loan to construct a new lift station and repair sanitary sewer lines. The new lift station will pump water from a nearby wetland, which will lower its level and allow the lagoon to discharge into it. In addition to the lagoon issues, there are several areas of the city with aged sanitary sewer lines that are either broken or compromised and need to be replaced.

USDA is providing financing for 234 water and environmental infrastructure projects through the Water and Waste Disposal Loan and Grant program. The funding can be used for drinking water, stormwater drainage and waste disposal systems for rural communities with 10,000 or fewer residents.

“Access to water is a key driver for economic opportunity and quality of life in rural communities,” Hazlett said. “Under the leadership of Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue, USDA is committed to being a strong partner to rural communities in building prosperity through modern water infrastructure.”  

Eligible communities and water districts can apply online on the interactive RD Apply tool, or they can apply through one of USDA Rural Development’s state or field offices.

USDA is making investments in rural communities in: Alaska, Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Iowa, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, North Carolina, North Dakota, Nebraska, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Vermont, Washington, Wisconsin and West Virginia. 

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 services such as schools, public safety and health care; and high-speed internet access in rural areas. For more information, visit www.rd.usda.gov.