On Monday, Aug. 3 the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced that it is investing $462 million to modernize critical drinking water and wastewater infrastructure in rural towns and cities.
“Upgrading the infrastructure that delivers safe drinking water and modern wastewater management facilities will improve public health and drive economic development in our small towns and cities,” Rural Development Deputy Under Secretary Bette Brand said.
Beneficiaries of the initiative include Fair Haven, Vermont.
“We know that when rural America thrives, all of America thrives,” said USDA Rural Development Director for New Hampshire and Vermont, Anthony Linardos. “Modern water systems and clean water are crucial in promoting the health of rural Americans and the success of rural businesses.”
USDA is funding 161 projects through the Water and Waste Disposal Loan and Grant Program. These investments will benefit 470,000 residents across the United States. Locally, in Fair Haven, a wastewater treatment system with aging components will get a modern upgrade through a $3.72 million loan and $2.65 million grant. Approximately 2,700 people will benefit from this urgently needed project which includes a more efficient processing system, renovations to the operator’s building, and installation of a computer-based supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) system. These improvements will help reduce operating costs, add redundancy and lead to better pollution control for the community.
USDA Rural Development provides loans and grants to help expand economic opportunities and create jobs in rural areas. This assistance supports infrastructure improvements; business development; housing; community facilities such as schools, public safety and health care; and high-speed internet access in rural areas. For more information, visit rd.usda.gov.