SEATTLE, WA, May 19, 2009 -- In a move that stands to create jobs, boost local economies, improve aging water infrastructure and protect human health and the environment for the people in the State of Idaho, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has awarded over $19.2 million to the Idaho Department of Environmental Quality. This new infusion of money provided by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 will help the state and local governments finance many of the overdue improvements to wastewater projects that are essential to protecting public health and the environment across the state.
"This is great news for Idaho communities and for the environment," said Michelle Pirzadeh, acting Regional Administrator for EPA Region 10 in Seattle. "Safe, clean water is fundamental for healthy communities and healthy local economies. This funding will not only aid Idaho's critical water infrastructure, but it will also offer workers opportunities for 'green' jobs."
The Recovery Act funds will go to the state's Clean Water State Revolving Fund program. The Clean Water State Revolving Fund program provides low interest loans for water quality protection projects for wastewater treatment, non-point source pollution control, and watershed and estuary management. An unprecedented $4 billion dollars will be awarded to fund wastewater infrastructure projects across the country under the Recovery Act in the form of low interest loans, principal forgiveness and grants. At least 20% of the funds provided under the Recovery Act are to be used for green infrastructure, water and energy efficiency improvements and other environmentally innovative projects.
Since the Clean Water State Revolving Fund program began in 1987, EPA has awarded more than $26 billion in grants, which states have turned into $69 billion of financial assistance for water quality projects. The revolving nature of the program ensures water quality projects will be funded for generations to come.
President Obama signed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) on February 17, 2009 and has directed that the Recovery Act be implemented with unprecedented transparency and accountability.
>> See how every dollar is being invested
>> More information on EPA's implementation of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 nationally
>> Information on EPA's implementation of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 in the Pacific Northwest and Alaska
>> Information on the Clean Water State Revolving Fund program