USDA Invests in Drinking Water Quality and Wastewater Management for 784,000 Rural Residents and Businesses in 42 States
Major Infrastructure Funding to be made to the Pueblo of Laguna, City of Lordsburg and the City of Truth or Consequences to Upgrade Water and Sewer Services
WASHINGTON, Nov. 19, 2019 – U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Deputy Under Secretary for Rural Development Donald “DJ” LaVoy today announced that the department is investing $635 million in 122 projects to improve water systems and wastewater handling services in rural communities in 42 states. USDA is funding the projects through the Water and Waste Disposal Loan and Grant program.
“These investments will bring reliable infrastructure to rural communities. They will replace old, fragile, leaking water pipes with new ones and allow upgrades to water handling systems that are decades old, boosting water pressure and cutting water losses. Working with our partners, these investments create jobs and improve public health and safety,” LaVoy said. “Under the leadership of President Trump and Agriculture Secretary Perdue, USDA is committed to partnering with rural communities to help them improve their infrastructure, because when rural America thrives, all of America thrives.”
Rural Development New Mexico State Director Arthur A. Garcia added, “This is a major announcement by USDA where we’ve obligated over $33.7 million dollars to fund infrastructure projects at Laguna Pueblo, the City of Lordsburg and the City of Truth or Consequences. The financial support to these communities will allow the residents to access reliable water and wastewater delivery systems, which ultimately ensures a better quality of life.”
- Rural Development has obligated a $19,361,000 loan/grant financing package to the Pueblo of Laguna to rehabilitate existing sewer lines. This project will focus on three of the pueblo's villages, Paraje, Laguna and Mesita. The money will also be used to pay for the enlargement of the Mesita sewage lagoon which will address future growth. When completed, the project will solve health and sanitary and possible environmental issues by eliminating the use of the old existing sewer lines. The investment will also connect sewer lines to homes that currently don't have sewer services.
- The City of Lordsburg will receive a $4,958,000 loan/grant funding package to complete a massive rehabilitation project to the city’s water system. The water system upgrade will pay for the rehabilitation of the city's water wells including the installation of a back-up power generator which will reduce the length of service interruptions during power outages. The money will also see the rehabilitation of the existing water treatment plant which will ensure the water supplied to the city is below the fluoride maximum contaminant levels. Ultimately, more than 41,000 feet of old water lines will be replaced with PVC pipes. This includes the replacement of old water lines throughout a portion of downtown Lordsburg along city streets. The new water lines will see the installation of 19 shut-off valves and 37 fire hydrants. The fire hydrants will be spaced to ensure adequate coverage based on the local fire department's standards.
- The City of Truth or Consequences is receiving a $9,417,000 loan grant package to upgrade both the water and wastewater delivery systems. The upgrade will include the replacement of the existing gas chlorination system, and the upgrade of existing booster water pumps. A new backup generator at the city's Cook Street Water System Facility will also be installed to ensure electrical service if there is a power outage. When completed 32,000 feet of old and leaking water lines in the downtown area of Truth or Consequences will be replaced. The replacement of the old water pipes is vital because the new water lines will reduce water losses, and increase the overall water system efficiency, and alleviate a health and sanitary issue. The project will also provide necessary upgrades to the existing wastewater treatment plant and to upgrade a computer system which monitors and controls the water delivery to the city's customers. The project will benefit 2,460 residential, 477 commercial users, 53 city and three industrial users along with the neighboring village of Williamsburg's 243 residential and 22 commercial users.
The projects announced today are in Alabama, Arizona, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Washington, West Virginia and Wisconsin.
Eligible applicants include rural cities, towns and water districts. The funds can be used for drinking water, stormwater drainage and waste disposal systems in rural communities that meet population limits. View the interactive RD Apply tool or contact one of USDA Rural Development’s state or field offices for application or eligibility information.
In April 2017, President Donald J. Trump established the Interagency Task Force on Agriculture and Rural Prosperity to identify legislative, regulatory and policy changes that could promote agriculture and prosperity in rural communities. In January 2018, Secretary Perdue presented the Task Force’s findings to President Trump. These findings included 31 recommendations to align the federal government with state, local and tribal governments to take advantage of opportunities that exist in rural America. Increasing investments in rural infrastructure is a key recommendation of the task force.
To view the report in its entirety, please view the Report to the President of the United States from the Task Force on Agriculture and Rural Prosperity (PDF, 5.4 MB). In addition, to view the categories of the recommendations, please view the Rural Prosperity infographic (PDF, 190 KB).
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 www.rd.usda.gov.