Wastewater Visibility News
$19.4M in Financing to Improve Ohio Wastewater and Drinking Water
Communities in southeast Ohio are receiving $19.4 million in financing through the Ohio EPA to improve Ohio wastewater and drinking water infrastructure.
Zanesville, Nelsonville, Barnesville, New Straitsville, Scio, Warsaw, South Point, Coalton, Highland Ridge Water and Sewer Association, Inc., the Muskingum Watershed Conservancy District, and Harrison County are among the southeast Ohio water utilities receiving portions of approximately $19.4 million in low-interest and principal forgiveness funding. The funding, made possible by the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), is projected to save the communities nearly $11 million on interest alone.
The loans are possible, in part, through the Water Pollution Control Loan Fund (WPCLF) and the Water Supply Revolving Loan Account (WSRLA). The WPCLF was established in 1989 to provide low-interest loans to help communities improve wastewater treatment systems. WSRLA, established in 1998, provides loans for improvements to community drinking water systems and nonprofit, noncommunity public water systems.
Ohio Governor Mike DeWine called Ohio drinking water and sewerage treatment infrastructure important aspects of the state’s economy and the citizen’s quality of life. “My administration,” said Governor DeWine, “has made clean water a priority across the state and will continue this effort moving forward.”
Designated for drinking water and sewage treatment infrastructure projects, utilities began receiving the funding in Q3 2022.
The following information from an announcement released by the Ohio EPA at the end of 2022 provides further insight into this effective and proactive funding approach.
Ohio EPA’s state revolving fund (SRF) loans are provided to communities to build and upgrade wastewater and drinking water infrastructure, upgrade home sewage treatment systems, better manage stormwater, address combined sewer overflows, and implement other water quality-related projects. Financial assistance helps support planning, design, and construction activities and enhances the technical, managerial, and financial capacity of these systems. WPCLF loans also make possible the restoration and protection of some of Ohio’s highest quality water bodies through the fund’s Water Resource Restoration Sponsor Program.
Ohio’s SRF loan programs are partially supported by annual federal capitalization grants and have grown substantially over time because of the revolving nature of the loan issuance and payments back into the fund. The SRF programs are managed by Ohio EPA’s Division of Environmental and Financial Assistance, with assistance from the Ohio Water Development Authority. Ohio EPA is responsible for program development and implementation, individual project coordination, and environmental and other technical reviews/approvals of projects seeking funds. The Ohio Water Development Authority provides financial management of the SRF funds.
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