USDA awards $1.2 billion nationally to upgrade water infrastructure, benefiting 936,000 rural residents
PORTLAND, Ore., December 6, 2018 — The rural town of Mosier in northern Oregon will improve its municipal water system with the help of $1.4 million in funding from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development, announced State Director John Huffman today.
“It can be a struggle for any city to finance a large infrastructure project, but it is especially challenging for very small towns like Mosier,” said Huffman. “These water system improvements will ensure this rural community has access to a safe, reliable source of drinking water for decades to come.”
Mosier currently depends upon a single well to provide water to 269 households; 4 small businesses; a sewage treatment plant; and a school with 228 students and 28 staff members. Additionally, the community is planning to build a combined fire station, city hall, and community center, which will also be connected to the municipal water system. However, the town’s water infrastructure does not have the capacity to meet increasing demand and lacks a backup water supply and systems.
With the help of a $763,000 loan and a $659,418 grant from USDA’s Water and Waste Disposal Program, Mosier will drill a new well that will serve as a backup water source. Additionally, the town will install a new telemetry system to improve system efficiency and build a new pump station to provide backup power and redundant pumps. The new station will also expand the system’s capacity, ensuring sufficient utilities are provided to both the existing customers and anticipated new residents.
Overall, this project will provide a sustainable groundwater supply, backup systems, and expanded capacity to ensure the 455 residents of this growing community continue to have access to the drinking water they need.
Nationwide, USDA is awarding $1.2 billion in loans and grants for 234 projects to rebuild or improve rural water and wastewater infrastructure. More than 936,000 rural residents in 46 states will benefit from these investments. The funding is contingent upon the recipients meeting the terms of the loan and grant agreements.
Rural Development’s Water and Waste Disposal Program financing can be used for drinking water, storm water drainage, and waste disposal systems for rural communities with a population of 10,000 or less. Most state and local government entities, nonprofits, and federally-recognized tribes are eligible to apply. Applications are accepted year-round, and local staff members are available to discuss potential projects.