WASHINGTON, DC, April 14, 2010 -- Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced the funding of 18 projects designed to protect public health by improving water quality and public sanitation services in 12 states. The projects, funded through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, are expected to provide construction jobs and create infrastructure needed to support community growth.
"Through these Recovery Act projects announced today, we are helping to achieve the Obama Administration's economic recovery goals to rebuild and revitalize the nation's infrastructure." Vilsack said. "These investments in water and wastewater infrastructure will deliver safe drinking water and protect the quality of our environment."
For example, in rural Connecticut, the Town of Woodstock has been selected to receive a $786,000 loan and a $614,000 grant to provide wastewater system improvements for the Woodstock Academy. The Academy serves as the public high school for residents of Woodstock, Eastford, Brooklyn, Pomfret, Canterbury, and Union, Connecticut. Other communities from Connecticut and neighboring states enroll their students as well. As the population and student enrollment increases, additional capacity for sanitary disposal will be needed. The existing on-site wastewater system was designed for a maximum flow of 6,000 gallons per day and the current flow has reached 5,800 gallons per day. This project will connect the Woodstock Academy wastewater system to the Town of Woodstock wastewater system, accommodating the growing needs of the system.
Also, in rural Wisconsin, the Village of Cochrane has been selected to receive a $1 million loan to provide wastewater system improvements. The existing system consists of a two-cell stabilization pond system with effluent disposal in two seepage cells. Together with $100,000 of borrower contribution, this project will address issues related to stabilization pond leakage, improvement of the fill and draw operation of the stabilization pond, sludge accumulation in the stabilization pond, and encroachment of nearby residential development. The proposed project will include lining existing stabilization ponds and increasing the ponds' depth to six feet.
The loan and grant funding announced today totals $48.6 million and will leverage an additional $13.4 million of recipient contributions to complete water and wastewater system projects. To date, USDA has announced $2.46 billion in Recovery Act funds for water and environmental projects. The Recovery Act was signed into law by President Obama one year ago.
The ARRA funding announced today is being administered by USDA Rural Development's Water and Environmental Program which provides loans and grants to ensure that the necessary investments are made in water and wastewater infrastructure to deliver safe drinking water and protect the environment in rural areas.
Funding of individual recipients is contingent upon their meeting the terms of the loan or grant agreement. See a complete list of award recipients, by state >
President Obama signed The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 into law on Feb. 17, 2009. It is designed to jumpstart the nation's economy, create or save millions of jobs, and put a down payment on addressing long-neglected challenges so our country can thrive in the 21st century. The Act includes measures to modernize our nation's infrastructure, enhance energy independence, expand educational opportunities, preserve and improve affordable health care, provide tax relief, and protect those in greatest need.
More information about USDA's Recovery Act efforts is available at www.usda.gov/recovery. More information about the Federal government's efforts on the Recovery Act is available at www.recovery.gov .
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