Friday, September 3, 2021

Governor Hochul Announces $53 Million for Clean Water Systems and Drinking Water Infrastructure Projects Statewide


Projects Located in Central New York, Mid-Hudson Valley, Long Island, North Country, Southern Tier and Western New York Regions`

 Governor Kathy Hochul today announced that the New York State Environmental Facilities Corporation has approved more than $53 million to help nine municipalities finance their drinking water and wastewater projects. The grants, interest-free financings and low-cost financings approved by the EFC Board of Directors help provide innovative solutions for critical infrastructure projects across the state that protect or improve water quality. Of the project financings announced today, over $20 million will be allocated to plan, design and construct a regional wastewater treatment plant for the villages of Watkins Glen and Montour Falls in Schuyler County.

"By investing in clean water and drinking water infrastructure, New York is helping to protect public health, quality of life and the environment," Governor Hochul said. "We will continue to work hard to help local governments access the resources they need to complete critical water infrastructure improvement projects and lay the groundwork for growth and resiliency for generations to come." 

Environmental Facilities Corporation President and CEO Joseph Rabito said, "Water infrastructure investments are tough decisions for our communities. Governor Hochul has a unique understanding of these challenges having led on these issues at every level of government. Governor Hochul's announcement today puts a premium on the partnerships that makes our communities healthier and more vibrant.  Through EFC, New York State is partnering with local governments and providing grant funding for effective planning that gets shovels in the ground faster through the Engineering Planning Grant program (EPG), leading to affordable financing and completion of these critical investments."

Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner and EFC Board Chair Basil Seggos said, "As a leader with experience serving at all levels of government, Governor Hochul understands how sustained investments through New York's robust Clean Water Infrastructure Act and Clean Water State Revolving Fund provide communities across the state with the financial flexibility to fund critical clean water infrastructure improvements. Clean water projects help safeguard public health and the environment, keep our economy running, and create good paying jobs."

New York State Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker said, "New York's aging infrastructure requires modernization in many municipalities where resources are tight. This latest funding will assist communities that are facing significant costs for addressing drinking water system upgrades and improve wastewater storage through projects that are both cost-effective and environmentally sound."

The Board's approval includes financing through the Clean Water State Revolving Fund ("CWSRF") and Drinking Water State Revolving Fund ("DWSRF") and grants pursuant to the Water Infrastructure Improvement Act (WIIA).

The project financings approved at the September 2 meeting include:

Drinking Water Projects:

  • Village of Cattaraugus in Cattaraugus County - $848,477 in long-term, interest-free financing to upgrade spring water sources, replace the water transmission main from the spring sources to the water distribution system, treatment system upgrades and water meter replacement.
  • Town of Hume in Allegany County - $2,018,700 grant from the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund and $1,279,600 in short-term, interest-free financing to extend the town system to serve the Hume-Sanford Springs water system.
  • Town of Lewisboro in Westchester County - $289,500 WIIA grant to install water treatment software, new equipment and flushing valves and hydrants.

Clean Water Projects:

  • Village of Watkins Glen in Schuyler County - $13,806,415 in long-term, interest-free financing for the planning, design and construction of a regional wastewater treatment plant facility to serve the villages of Watkins Glen and Montour Falls.
  • Village of Montour Falls in Schuyler County - $5,662,103 in long-term, interest-free financing for the planning, design and construction of the aforementioned regional wastewater treatment plant facility with Watkins Glen.
  • Village of Phoenix in Oswego County - $2,734,136 in long-term, interest-free financing for wastewater system improvements.
  • Village of Potsdam in St. Lawrence County - $12,078,502 in long-term, interest-free financing for improvements to the wastewater treatment plant and pump station.
  • Town of Highlands in Orange County - $1,569,584 in long-term, interest-free financing for wastewater treatment plant repairs and improvements.
  • Village of Westhampton Beach in Suffolk County - $1,784,500 WIIA grant, $3,025,378 in short-term, interest-free financing and $8,025,377 in short-term, market rate financing to construct a new sewer collection system and upgrade the county sewer district sewage treatment plant.

In addition, the Board approved a $255 million bond that will refinance 64 existing wastewater and drinking water projects at a lower interest rate, saving approximately $24 million for ratepayers across the state. The bond issuance will also provide long-term financing for 37 existing infrastructure projects, helping municipalities to continue moving forward with meaningful projects that protect public health and resources in a cost-effective manner. 

As part of its financial services that save communities time, money and staff resources, EFC annually reviews its portfolio and leverages its high credit rating and market demand to help its municipal partners recognize savings on qualified existing bonds.

The communities that will benefit from refinancing their projects through the $255 million bond issuance had participated in earlier project financings through EFC with various drinking water and wastewater infrastructure projects through the State Revolving Funds. Refunding bond sales deliver additional savings for EFC's municipal partners by refinancing the original bonds that funded their projects at an even lower interest rate.

The CWSRF and the DWSRF are the EFC's core funding programs. With its partner DEC, EFC is responsible for the operation and administration of the CWSRF. The CWSRF allows EFC to provide interest-free or low-interest rate financing and grants to support a variety of eligible water quality improvement projects. EFC similarly operates and administers the DWSRF, with its partner DOH, provide interest-free or low-interest rate financing and grants for drinking water infrastructure projects. To learn more about how EFC provides access to low-cost capital, grants and expert technical assistance, visit EFC's website at

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