Kansas Finds 39 Projects Eligible for Stimulus Funds

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently announced that it had awarded $19.5 million in American Reinvestment and Recovery Act (ARRA) funding to the Kansas Department of Health and Environment to improve drinking water infrastructure across the state. The funds went to Kansas’ Drinking Water State Revolving Fund program, which provides low-interest loans to finance infrastructure improvements for drinking water systems.The state agency said it plans to supplement the $19.5 million with other funds from its Drinking Water State Revolving Fund, to fund 39 projects costing just over $53 million.

ARRA requires that a percentage of the funding be awarded with principal forgiveness. Each of the 39 selected projects includes some portion of funding on which the principal will be forgiven. By supplementing the funding, the state is extending the benefits of principal forgiveness to more Kansas communities. The remainder of each project’s funding is being provided as a low-interest loan.

At least 20 percent of the ARRA funds are to be used for green infrastructure, water, and energy efficiency improvements and other environmentally innovative projects. Some of those components found in the 39 selected projects include the reduction of excessive water loss, increases in energy efficiency, generation of clean or renewable energy for use at the facilities or in the systems, and the installation of water meters capable of automated reading.

Cities and counties across Kansas submitted 143 project proposals for funding consideration. Proposals were reviewed by department staff who made the selections based on readiness to proceed and the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund project priority ranking system.

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