WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), co-founder of the U.S. Senate Environmental Justice Caucus, and U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced over $206 million in support for Illinois to help clean up drinking water and upgrade water infrastructure throughout the state. The funding is part of the more than $50 billion investment in water infrastructure upgrades thanks to Duckworth’s Drinking Water and Wastewater Infrastructure Act (DWWIA), which she authoredand was included in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. Almost half of this funding will be available as grants or principal forgiveness loans, ensuring funds reach underserved communities most in need of investments in water infrastructure.

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“I’m proud that this historic investment, which was made possible by my Drinking Water and Wastewater Infrastructure Act in President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, will help improve drinking water and wastewater infrastructure across Illinois,” said Duckworth. “I’m also pleased that because of my DWWIA law, portions of this funding will be available as grants and loan forgiveness to ensure these investments reach the most underserved communities. Every American—regardless of their race, income or zip code—deserves to know that the systems that carry and process the water they use every day are safe, clean and reliable.”

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“Access to clean and safe water is not just a basic necessity, it is a fundamental human right,” said Durbin. “Yet far too many communities across Illinois have been grappling with the costs of updating aging infrastructure that jeopardizes the quality and reliability of their water systems. Thanks to the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, we’re not only safeguarding public health but also laying the groundwork for a more resilient future.”

As co-founder of the U.S. Senate’s Environmental Justice Caucus, improving water infrastructure in Illinois and across the country has been one of Duckworth’s top priorities. The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, which included Senator Duckworth’s DWWIA, is the most significant federal investment in water infrastructure in history, including $15 billion to replace lead service lines across the nation.Duckworth’s DWWIA, which has a focus on disadvantaged communities,is helping rebuild our nation’s crumbling and dangerous water infrastructure and enabling communities to repair and modernize their failing wastewater systems, while creating jobs.

This funding is part of a $5.8 billion investment through the Clean Water and Drinking Water State Revolving Funds (SRF), one of EPA’s signature water investment programs. This multi-billion-dollar investment will fund state-run, low-interest loan programs to address key challenges, with $2.6 billion going to the Clean Water SRF for wastewater and stormwater infrastructure and $3.2 billion going to the Drinking Water SRF for drinking water infrastructure nationwide. Today’s announcement includes allotments for Bipartisan Infrastructure Law General Supplemental funds and Emerging Contaminant funds for SRF programs for fiscal year 2024. EPA anticipates announcing allocations for billions in additional resources in fiscal year 2024 for the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law Lead Service Line Replacement fund later this Spring.

The Drinking Water State Revolving Funds and the Clean Water State Revolving Funds have been the foundation of water infrastructure investments for more than 30 years, providing low-cost financing for local projects across America. SRF programs are critically important programs for investing in the nation’s water infrastructure. They are designed to generate significant and sustainable water quality and public health benefits across the country. Their impact is amplified by the growth inherent in a revolving loan structure – payment of principal and interest on loans made are available to address future needs.

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