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New Jersey Future and other Jersey Water Works Members Call for Federal Funding for Water Infrastructure

February 10th, 2021 by

New Jersey Future joined 56 Jersey Water Works members calling for federal investment in our water infrastructure in a letter sent to New Jersey’s congressional delegation. 

New Jersey’s communities continue to confront issues including aging infrastructure, lead in drinking water, combined sewer overflows, and polluted waterways. With the added burden of the COVID-19 economy, the funds needed for these infrastructure investments exceeds the resources available to local and state governments, making a federal infrastructure investment essential. 

The letter details five steps the federal government can take to ensure safe, clean drinking water for every New Jerseyan, including:

  • Increasing the Drinking Water and Clean Water State Revolving Funds (SRF) to $14 billion and $13 billion, respectively, as well as revising limits on principal forgiveness.
  • Introduce a House companion to the Drinking Water Infrastructure Act of 2020 (pending in the US Senate) to facilitate replacement of toxic lead service lines.
  • Create a federal water affordability program to provide financial and water efficiency assistance to low-income customers, as suggested by the EPA’s National Drinking Water Advisory Council’s Affordability Work Group in 2009.
  • Advance climate solutions drawn from the Blueprint to Rebuild America’s Infrastructure as well as the Water Infrastructure Act (WIA) of 2020 and the Drinking Water Infrastructure Act (DWIA) of 2020, that include solutions for small, financially disadvantaged, and rural communities.
  • Develop a new COVID-19 recovery package that targets significant new investments in community development programs that address long-standing and unjust environmental, health, and economic burdens, specifically Community Development Financial Institutions, Community Development Block Grants, the Environmental Protection Agency’s Brownfields Program, expanded funding for federally qualified health centers, and Environmental Justice Small Grants Program.

Read the full letter here.

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