OHIO VALLEY — Communities in Southeast Ohio are receiving a total of $6.4 million in low-interest and principal forgiveness funding from Ohio EPA to improve wastewater and drinking water infrastructure and make other water quality improvements. The loans were approved between July 1 and Sept. 30, 2018.
Among the funding is $1.4 million for the village of Middleport.
Middleport is receiving $1.4 million in principal forgiveness to install separated storm sewers, catch basins and make other improvements to address combined sewer overflows.
The lower interest rates and forgiven principal will save these communities more than $6.5 million. Statewide, Ohio EPA awarded approximately $174 million in loans during the third quarter of the year, including $6.6 million in principal forgiveness. Combined, Ohio communities will save more than $34.3 million when compared to market-rate loans.
Other Southeast Ohio projects receiving funding include:
* Mount Pleasant is receiving $51,000 to make water system upgrades, including work on the booster station, a new backup well and replacing water lines, hydrants, valves and meters.
* Adams County Regional Water District is receiving $383,000, including $100,000 in principal forgiveness, to repair and replace waterlines, valves and fittings to serve residential customers.
* Muskingum County is receiving $1.2 million, including $701,000 in principal forgiveness, to install 30,600 linear feet of water line.
* Beaver is receiving $289,000, including $75,000 in principal forgiveness, to make improvements to the wastewater treatment plant.
* Powhatan Point is receiving $318,000 to replace a lift station.
* West Union is receiving $2.7 million to make improvements and replacements of village sewage pump stations.
* Frazeysburg ($20,000), Roseville ($20,000), Southern Perry County Water District ($10,000), Somerset ($10,000) and Sunday Creek Valley Water ($9,500) each are receiving interest-free loans to complete asset management plans for their drinking water systems. Additionally, between $9,500 and $10,000 of each loan is principal forgiveness, meaning it does not have to be repaid.
Created in 1989, the Water Pollution Control Loan Fund (WPCLF) helps communities improve their wastewater treatment systems. The Water Supply Revolving Loan Account (WSRLA), started in 1998, provides loans for improvements to community drinking water systems and nonprofit, noncommunity public water systems. Both programs offer below- market interest rate loans, which can save communities a substantial amount of money compared to a market-rate loan.
Ohio EPA’s state revolving fund (SRF) loans are provided to communities to build and upgrade wastewater and drinking water infrastructure, upgrade home sewage treatment systems, better manage storm water, address combined sewer overflows and implement other water quality-related projects. Financial assistance helps support planning, design and construction activities and enhances the technical, managerial and financial capacity of these systems. WPCLF loans also make possible the restoration and protection of some of Ohio’s highest quality water bodies through the fund’s Water Resource Restoration Sponsor Program.
Ohio’s SRF loan programs are partially supported by annual federal capitalization grants and have grown substantially over time because of the revolving nature of the loan issuance and payments back into the fund. The SRF programs are managed by Ohio EPA’s Division of Environmental and Financial Assistance, with assistance from the Ohio Water Development Authority. Ohio EPA is responsible for program development and implementation, individual project coordination, and environmental and other technical reviews/approvals of projects seeking funds. The Ohio Water Development Authority provides financial management of the SRF funds.