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EPA Awards $8 Million to Connecticut for Drinking Water Protection Program
Release Date: 07/06/04
Contact Information: Contact: Amy Miller, EPA Press Office (617-918-1042)
For Immediate Release: July 6, 2004; Release # 04-07-06
BOSTON – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced today that it has awarded more than $8 million to the state of Connecticut for its Drinking Water State Revolving Fund Program. The state can use the funds to support various drinking water programs within Connecticut and make low-interest loans to public and private community water systems to improve their facilities.
“This funding will help many Connecticut communities carry out important projects to make their drinking water supplies cleaner and safer,” said Robert W. Varney, regional administrator for EPA's New England Office.
Grants to state drinking water revolving loan funds have been made since a 1996 amendment to the federal Safe Drinking Water Act, which authorized grants to the states for improving the infrastructure of drinking water systems. This year’s grant to Connecticut follows grants of $8 million in 2002 and $7.8 million in each of 2001 and 2000. EPA’s Drinking Water Needs Survey Report from February 2001 indicated that Connecticut’s drinking water infrastructure requires an investment of $1 billion over the next 20 years.
“Since the beginning of the Drinking Water SRF program, the Connecticut Department of Public Health has awarded $55 million in loans,” said Raymond Jarema, coordinator of the state’s drinking water fund. “Most recently, the program funded $36.5 million towards the completion of a new surface water filtration plant for the city of New Britain.”
Jarema noted that this plant is the state’s first major filtration plant that disinfects using ozone.
Examples of past loans from the state revolving loan fund include:
- $717,731 to the Watertown Fire District for design and construction of a water distribution pump station;
- $516,000 to the town of Newtown for construction of a water main extension to the Newtown High School to rectify lead and copper levels above permitted levels.
Each state is authorized to make loans directly to eligible entities. As loans are repaid, additional funds become available, which provide a continuous funding source to ensure that our nation’s waterways and water supplies remain safe.