Connecticut Receives More Than $30 Million to Support Local Clean Water Projects
October 4, 2018
HARTFORD, CT – Governor Dannel P. Malloy announced today that the State of Connecticut has been awarded over $30 million in Clean Water and Drinking Water State Revolving Loan Fund grants by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency that will be used to help finance community-based water infrastructure projects, including for public drinking water systems and municipal sewage plants.
“Water is a public trust, and ensuring that our residents have access to clean and safe drinking water is one of the most vital functions of government,” Governor Malloy said. “Over the past eight years, Connecticut has made significant strides in improving the state’s overall drinking water quality and removing nutrient pollution from the state’s waterways. Connecticut welcomes these federal dollars and will leverage them along with state investments as we continue to make needed upgrades to our drinking water and wastewater infrastructure.”
“This $30 million federal investment in Connecticut’s public water infrastructure will give communities across the state critical resources they need to ensure clean, safe drinking water and improve the quality of our rivers and streams,” the members of Connecticut’s Congressional delegation said in a joint statement. “Clean, sanitary water is among the most vital public resources on this planet. This major award is exactly the kind of infrastructure investment our federal government should be making in our communities, here in Connecticut and nationwide.”
“Connecticut is dedicated to continuing to improve the quality of our waterways by upgrading our wastewater treatment plants and ensuring they meet the highest standards through improved management of storm water runoff,” Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) Commissioner Rob Klee said. “Protecting our waters requires a major financial investment, and we are thankful for the support of our federal partners in helping our state achieve its water quality goals.”
“The provision of potable drinking water is recognized as one of the great public health achievements in history,” Connecticut Department of Public Health (DPH) Commissioner Dr. Raul Pino said. “This funding demonstrates that our federal partners and the State of Connecticut are committed to ensuring that public drinking water infrastructure is sustainable for future generations.”
Under Governor Malloy’s leadership, the state has undertaken a number of significant improvements to drinking water and waterways including:
- The creation of the first ever State Water Plan in 2018, resulting from an extensive stakeholder process led by four state agencies. Under Governor Malloy’s leadership, the state’s water resources are better protected for future generations.
- Connecticut reduced by more than two thirds the amount of nitrogen leaving the state’s sewage treatment plants, meeting and exceeding the goal it agreed to with the EPA one year early, in 2013, and vastly reducing one of the biggest contributors to hypoxia, or low oxygen levels, in Long Island Sound. In addition, the state has updated the nitrogen credit trading program that made this achievement possible, making continued reductions sustainable over the long term by eliminating the need for state subsidies.
- Ninety-four percent of all high-hazard dams receive the required regulatory inspections under an owner stewardship program. Governor Malloy also invested in the maintenance of state-owned dams, including repairing nine high and significant hazard state-owned dams at a cost of $16 million. DEEP also maintained and repaired 29 federally constructed flood control projects, protecting the life and property of Connecticut residents.
- DEEP performed the largest dam removal in Connecticut to date in 2017 and 2018. State-owned Springborn Dam on the Scantic River in Enfield was in poor condition, blocked fish passage, was a public safety risk, and held contaminated sediment.
- DPH reduced by 70 percent the average time from the date of a public water system sanitary survey to the date a report is issued, allowing the state to identify and address unsanitary conditions and public health code violations faster and more effectively, thereby reducing the potential of water system contamination and protecting consumers.
- To date, DPH has issued 162 loans worth approximately $327 million in federal and state funds for infrastructure improvement projects at public water systems throughout the state. Those projects have included water main extensions and replacements, water treatment plant upgrades, pump station improvements, water storage tank and emergency power generator purchases and installations, and other improvements to protect the purity, safety, and adequacy of Connecticut’s public water supply.