New York governor rolls out $255 million in grants for water infrastructure upgrades

(UC) — Governor Kathy Hochul announced the availability of $255 million in state grants for critical water infrastructure projects that will protect New York’s public health and the environment, the governor said on Thursday.

"Every New Yorker deserves access to safe, clean water and today's announcement represents the latest installment in the State's nation-leading investment to tackle emerging contaminants and protect residents and the environment from dangerous pollutants," Governor Hochul said. 

This announcement marks the latest action by Governor Hochul to upgrade New York's water and sewer systems, reduce water pollution, and safeguard vital drinking water supplies from emerging contaminants and toxic chemicals. This infusion of public funds will continue to help make water infrastructure investments more affordable for local governments and create jobs in the manufacturing, engineering, construction, plant operations, and related industry sectors. 

The announcement was made in Suffolk County where $20 million from the State's Septic Replacement Program will help address more than 2,000 substandard or failing septic systems and cesspools that cause significant water quality impairments. 

The available funding will directly help water providers update aging water infrastructure in Long Island, which is almost entirely dependent on a sole-source aquifer. Protecting the unique groundwater source is vital to ensuring residents in Nassau and Suffolk have clean water to drink.

The Environmental Facilities Corporation administers the WIIA and IMG programs working closely with the Departments of Health and Environmental Conservation. The state has awarded more than $1.76 billion in water infrastructure grants through EFC since 2015, including $638 million announced by Governor Hochul in April. To date, EFC has awarded 834 WIIA and IMG grants to 488 communities.  

"With significant investments like this, Governor Hochul continues to make improving water quality a priority in communities across New York State,” said Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner and Environmental Facilities Corporation Board Chair Basil Seggos. “Today's grants will provide necessary assistance to allow municipalities to upgrade and modernize their aging water and sewer systems, safeguard drinking water, and help protect residents from emerging contaminants. In addition, these projects create jobs, boosting economies statewide."

Grant applications and required supporting documentation must be submitted through EFC's website by 5 p.m. on September 9.  

In addition, $30 million was made available through the State Septic System Replacement Program to support home and small business owners in the targeted replacement of aging and sub-standard septic systems and removal of cesspools in communities statewide.  

The Septic Replacement Program improves water quality by encouraging and incentivizing homeowners' replacement of cesspools and failing or inadequate septic systems around a waterbody known to be impaired by septic system discharges.

DEC and DOH identified priority geographic areas where property owners are eligible to participate based on the presence of a sole-source aquifer used for drinking water, known water quality impairment linked to failing septic systems, and/or the ability for septic system upgrades to mitigate water quality impairments. EFC will be providing detailed information about how to access the funding to counties with identified priority geographic areas. DEC and DOH will re-evaluate priority geographic areas in future rounds of funding. 

New York State will provide funds to counties to reimburse eligible property owners for a portion of the cost of replacing cesspools and septic systems and installing more environmentally effective systems. Eligible property owners can be reimbursed 50% of eligible costs up to $10,000.

Related News

From Archive


{{ error }}
{{ comment.comment.Name }} • {{ comment.timeAgo }}
{{ comment.comment.Text }}