A total of 63 communities across Idaho will receive funding for drinking water projects ranging from assessing and repairing the current water supply to eliminating lead water pipes.
The Idaho Legislature allocated millions of dollars to Governor Brad Little’s “First Idahoinitiative, which uses record surplus funds in the state budget to address issues such as tax relief, education and water improvement projects. Through this initiative, many long-term water quality improvement projects and the construction of safer water systems around Idaho have been funded.
“Families, farmers, ranchers and all residents of Idaho depend on clean and efficient water and wastewater systems,” Little said in a statement. Press release. “These systems are not only a crucial part of our way of life, but also of our economy. Funding these projects through my Leading Idaho plan is intended to ensure that Idaho residents – especially those in our rural communities – can depend on our water and wastewater infrastructure for generations to come. .
Other funds for water improvement projects have also been made available by the Idaho Department of Environmental Quality in the form of loans, American Rescue Plan Act grants, and grants. other financial aid from the State.
Here are some examples of how the funding will be used:
American Rescue Plan Act Water Improvement Fund
Country Haven Utilities Association Inc. in Blackfoot, Terrace Lakes Water Company in Garden City, and the Town of Juliaetta received nearly $83,000 in $2 million American Rescue Plan Act funding from DEQ. The funding will be used to fund upgrades and assess any gaps in the water supply systems.
Country Haven and Terrace Lakes will use the funds to determine improvements to drinking water systems, while Julietta will use the funds to upgrade its wastewater treatment systems. The funds will cover half of the total costs of each project, with the beneficiary covering the other half.
Statewide Water System Improvement Loans
The DEQ provided a low-interest loan of nearly $6.9 million for drinking water construction to the Kidd Island and Harbor View Joint Sewer Board in Kootenai County to significantly improve the existing water treatment and collection system. Loan proceeds are to be used for “the design, acquisition, construction and installation of improvements” as well as the “acquisition of necessary easements and/or rights of way”, according to a Press release of the DEQ.
Another $5.3 million loan was approved by the DEQ for “a new duplex intake pump system, including backup power and radio telemetry; new ultrafiltration membrane water treatment plant; new duplex treated water transfer pumps” and more for the Laclede Water District Booster Station in northern Idaho, according to a DEQ Press release.
A third sum of $2.7 million was loaned to Grand View in Owyhee County by the DEQ for the repair of a well, the implementation of water tests, the installation of a water treatment system and improvement of water distribution systems, according to a DEQ Press release.
State working fund assistance for water improvement
In May, the DEQ also awarded $37,916 in construction assistance for potable water at the Little Blacktail Ranch water district in Kootenai County following disconnected water lines after a road washout. . Funding for the aid came from the DEQ’s state revolving fund, which requires no repayments and is funded by grants from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, according to a Press release of the DEQ. Another similar grant was reward by DEQ in St. Maries to replace lead water piping.