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Vilsack announces $275M rural water infrastructure investment

IABN Stock Photo: U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture is planning a multimillion-dollar investment in rural water infrastructure.

Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack on Thursday announced that the department is investing approximately $272 million to modernize rural drinking water and wastewater infrastructure for 270,000 people living in rural communities across 37 states and Puerto Rico.

“These grants and loans are being provided under our rural development water and wastewater disposal program,” said Vilsack. “This program is designed to assist businesses and households in rural areas and towns with populations of less than 10,000 people.”

The city of Russell, Iowa, is receiving a $495,000 loan and a $296,000 grant to upgrade its municipal sewer system. The city will construct a Submerged Attached Growth Reactor treatment system and an ultraviolet disinfection treatment system. It also will upgrade the collection system. Vilsack says this project will improve the quality of life for 554 people who call Russell home.

“These grants and loans obviously create jobs, but they also protect jobs and enable communities to attract economic development,” said Vilsack. “They certainly are protecting and enhancing the quality of life from safe drinking water to protecting people’s homes from unnecessary flooding, which can cause great disruption in both households and in businesses.”

To learn more about investment resources for rural areas, contact a USDA Rural Development state office.