Support Funding for Water Infrastructure in FY 2022!
Write your Members to urge them to provide robust funding for water infrastructure funding programs in the fiscal year 2022 budget!
The Clean Water and Drinking Water State Revolving Funds programs (SRF) are important financing tools for wastewater, drinking water, and stormwater agencies to build and modernize the water infrastructure that protects public health, the environment, and promotes economic growth. The importance of safe and reliable drinking water and wastewater service during the Covid-19 crisis further highlights how critical it is for there to be robust funding to help communities address the challenges of aging water infrastructure. The Clean Water and Drinking Water SRF programs should be funded at levels that reflect the reality of our nation's water infrastructure crisis. The EPA has estimated that $655 billion is needed for drinking water and wastewater infrastructure over the next 20 years - and that doesn't include another estimated $100 billion needed for stormwater infrastructure.
For FY22, it is necessary that the appropriation amounts for SRF programs be doubled - at least $2.8 billion for the CWSRF and $1.3 billion for the DWSRF (the fully authorized amount), I also urge you to fully fund the Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA) program at $55 million for FY22. Congress created this new loan and loan guarantee program in 2014, and in 2015 corrected statutory language to the program to make it more useful to communities seeking low interest financing.
Also, please ask your Members to increase funding for the National Water Priorities Water Research Grant program to $20 million, increased funding for USDA's rural water/wastewater loan and grant program, as well as increase funding for the Bureau of Reclamation's water recycling program to $60 million, as well as increase funding for the new EPA Water Workforce Development Grant and EPA Overflow Control & Stormwater Municipal Reuse Grant programs.
Our federal budget is under tremendous pressure and Congress is making difficult decisions about how to prioritize spending. Increased investment in water infrastructure will not only ensure that communities have clean and safe water, but studies have shown that there is tremendous support among the public for increased investments in water infrastructure, and those investments have a higher job creation return-on-investment rate than federal investments in military, transportation, healthcare and personal income tax cuts.
A 2016 report by WEF and the WateReuse Association revealed that a suggested $34.7 billion of federal SRF spending over 5 years will generate $102.7 billion in total economic input, create more than 507,000 good-paying U.S. jobs, and be nearly budget neutral as that funding cycles through the economy.
Thank you for reaching out today!