SALT LAKE CITY — Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) awarded $63 million in Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funding to Utah for water infrastructure improvements. The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law allocates more than $50 billion to EPA toward repairing the nation’s essential water infrastructure, which helps communities access clean, safe and reliable drinking water, increase resilience, collect and treat wastewater to protect public health, clean up pollution and safeguard vital waterways. The grant marks the first significant distribution of water infrastructure funds thanks to the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. State allocations were previously announced.
“I was proud to negotiate the bipartisan infrastructure bill, which will better position Utah and our country to meet the infrastructure-related challenges of the 21st century,” said U.S. Senator Mitt Romney. “Investing in water infrastructure is key to maintaining Utah’s water supply, and because of this legislation, we are better positioned to improve our state’s wastewater treatment and drinking water infrastructure to meet our current and future needs.”
“All communities need access to clean, reliable, safe water,” said EPA Administrator Michael S. Regan. “Thanks to President Biden’s leadership and the resources from the historic Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, we are repairing aging water infrastructure, replacing lead service lines, cleaning up contaminants, and making our communities more resilient in the face of floods and climate impacts.”
“President Biden has been clear—we cannot leave any community behind as we rebuild America’s infrastructure with the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law,” said White House Infrastructure Coordinator Mitch Landrieu. “Because of his Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, nearly half of the additional SRF funding will now be grants or forgivable loans, making accessing these critical water resources easier for small, rural and disadvantaged communities.”
“This Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funding will support unprecedented investments in wastewater treatment and drinking water infrastructure across Utah’s communities,” said EPA Regional Administrator KC Becker. “These projects will create jobs and modernize and extend the water systems that keep our rivers clean and our water safe to drink in every corner of the state.”
“We are grateful to the leadership of Senator Romney and all who worked to make this critical funding a reality,” said Utah Department of Environmental Quality Director Kim Shelley. “Much of Utah’s drinking and wastewater infrastructure has reached or exceeded its useful life. We are also faced with drought and rapid growth, and communities are struggling to keep up with the high cost of major infrastructure projects. Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funding will allow these communities to not only address short-term needs, but also plan for a water resilient future.”
EPA’s SRFs are part of President Biden’s Justice40 initiative, which aims to deliver at least 40% of the benefits from certain federal programs flow to underserved communities. Furthermore, nearly half the funding available through the SRFs thanks to the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law must be grants or principal forgiveness loans that remove barriers to investing in essential water infrastructure in underserved communities across rural America and in urban centers.
Funding announced today represents FY22 awards for states that have submitted and obtained EPA’s approval of their plans for use of the funding. Capitalization grants will continue to be awarded, on a rolling state-by-state basis, as more states receive approval throughout FY22; states will also receive awards over the course of the next four years. As grants are awarded, the state SRF programs can begin to distribute the funds as grants and loans to communities across their state.
The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law presents the largest ever funding opportunity for investing in water infrastructure. Find out more about Bipartisan Infrastructure Law programs and other programs that help communities manage their water at www.epa.gov/infrastructure.