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USDA Partners to Improve Water and Wastewater Infrastructure for more than 442,000 Rural Americans across 42 States

Patience Hayes
Fort Worth
Release Date

Assistant to the Secretary for Rural Development Anne Hazlett today announced that USDA is investing $392 million to help rebuild and improve rural water and wastewater infrastructure in 42 states.

“USDA Rural Development’s Water & Environment Programs provide much needed Federal assistance to rural communities, said Douglas Wilson, Illinois State Director, “These projects along with many others awarded in Illinois during 2018 ensure that rural residents have safe and affordable drinking water and communities can provide environmental sound waste disposal.”

USDA is supporting investments in 5 infrastructure projects through the Water and Waste Disposal Loan and Grant program in Illinois. It can be used to finance drinking water, storm water drainage and waste disposal systems for rural communities with 10,000 or fewer residents. In many cases, states, other federal partners and nonprofits are working with USDA to also provide funding for these projects. Included in these Illinois investments are:

  • Green County Rural Water District received $400,000 in loan and $600,000 grant funds that will provide water to 107 users in Patterson, Walkerville, Bluffdale and White Hall Townships in Greene County, who need a safe and dependable water supply. This project will alleviate a health and sanitary issue due to unsafe wells and cisterns.

  • Menard Rural Water Cooperative received $420,000 in loan funds to be used for construction of 10,600 feet of water main for up to 20 users and 4,800 feet of water main for up to 14 users to provide clean, safe drinking water.

  • Village of Cisne received $610,000 in loan funds. These funds will used to repair and upgrade the village water treatment plant. The village provides water to more than 330 users in Wayne County

  • Village of Mansfield received $1,008,000 in loan funds to replace approximately 4,850 feet of water mains, improving water quality and fire protection. The system serves 465 residential customers and 13 businesses.

  • Village of Wayne City received $1,400,000 in loan and $682,800 in grant funds. These investments will improve water quality for 663 users in Wayne County, IL. The village will complete an upgrade of its water treatment plant.

In FY 2018, Congress provided a historic level of funding for water and wastewater infrastructure. The 2018 Omnibus spending bill includes $5.2 billion for USDA loans and grants, up from $1.8 billion in FY 2017. The bill also directs Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue to make investments in rural communities with the greatest infrastructure needs.

Eligible rural communities and water districts can apply online for funding to maintain, modernize or build water and wastewater systems. They can visit the interactive RD Apply tool, or they can apply through one of USDA Rural Development’s state or field offices.

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.