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EPA announces more than $37 million in Recovery Act funds for water infrastructure projects in Wisconsin to boost economy, create jobs and protect public health

Release Date: 08/20/2009
Contact Information: Phillippa Cannon, 312-353-6218, cannon.phillippa@epa.gov

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
No. 09-OPA159

(Chicago, Ill. - August 20, 2009) In a move that stands to create jobs, boost local economies, improve aging drinking water infrastructure and protect human health and the environment for people in the State of Wisconsin, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has awarded $37,750,000 million to the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources. 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 water projects that are essential to protecting public health and the environment across the state.

"EPA is pleased to provide more than $37 million in Recovery Act funds for much needed improvements to Wisconsin's aging drinking water infrastructure," said Bharat Mathur, Acting Regional Administrator. "This money will protect human health and improve water quality while helping to create good jobs in the state."

The Recovery Act funds will go to the state's Drinking Water State Revolving Fund programs.

The Drinking Water State Revolving Fund program provides low-interest loans for drinking water systems to finance infrastructure improvements. The program also emphasizes providing funds to small and disadvantaged communities and to programs that encourage pollution prevention as a tool for ensuring safe drinking water. An unprecedented $2 billion will be awarded to fund drinking water infrastructure projects across the country under the Recovery Act in the form of low-interest loans, principal forgiveness and grants. At least twenty percent 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 Drinking Water State Revolving Fund program began in 1997, EPA has awarded more than $8 billion in grants, which states have turned into $15 billion of financial assistance to fund drinking water projects. The revolving nature of the program ensures drinking water projects will be funded for generations to come.

President Obama signed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 on February 17, 2009, and has directed that the Recovery Act be implemented with unprecedented transparency and accountability. To that end, the American people can see how every dollar is being invested at Recovery.gov.

For information on EPA's implementation of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 visit http://www.epa.gov/recovery.
For information on the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund program visit http://www.epa.gov/safewater/dwsrf.

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