DALLAS, TX, March 11, 2010 -- Through the Drinking Water Infrastructure Grants Tribal Set-Aside Program, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has awarded $783,000 to the Pueblo of San Ildefonso in New Mexico. The funds will be used for improvements to the drinking water treatment facilities and associated distribution system for the Pajarito Village and Battleship Mesa. In addition, the funds will support rehabilitation of the drinking water system at Community Well #1 for the Main Village and Black Mesa.
"EPA will continue our investment of present-day resources to help our Tribal partners," said EPA Regional Administrator Al Armendariz. "Ensuring the purity of drinking water is one of our highest priorities."
The Safe Drinking Water Act, as amended in 1996, established the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund to make monies available to drinking water systems to finance infrastructure improvements. The Act also authorized EPA to set aside an amount available for the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund for grants to improve the infrastructure of drinking water systems that serve Indian tribes. Through this authority, EPA established the Drinking Water Infrastructure Grants Tribal Set-Aside Program.
"We appreciate EPA's support to enable us to provide safe drinking water to the community of San Ildefonso," said Governor Perry Martinez of Pueblo de San Ildefonso. "We will be able to reduce the arsenic in our drinking water."
Upon completion of the project, it will provide the benefits of public health and environmental safety to approximately 1,400 tribal residents in the Pueblo.
Additional information on EPA grants: http://www.epa.gov/region6/gandf/index.htm
Tribal Set-Aside Fact Sheet: http://www.epa.gov/safewater/dwsrf/allotments/tribes/frequentquestions.html
More about activities in EPA Region 6: http://www.epa.gov/region6
EPA audio file is available at http://www.epa.gov/region6/6xa/podcast/mar2010.html