FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 30, 2015
Sarah Ganong, (203) 787 0646 ext. 128
SAVE THE SOUND APPLAUDS $480 MILLION FOR CLEAN WATER PROJECTS
Clean Water Funding will support wastewater projects, protect local waters and Long Island Sound
New Haven, Conn.—The State Bond Commission today approved $480 million for local improvement projects for wastewater treatment plants and sanitary sewer systems across Connecticut. Save the Sound, a bi-state program of Connecticut Fund for the Environment, applauds this investment in reducing pollution and long-term infrastructure improvements around the state.
“Clean Water Funds are essential to protect the public’s health and to restore Long Island Sound’s water quality. Today we are particularly glad to see this funding support a wide variety of important projects from every corner of the state,” said Leah Lopez Schmalz, director of legislative and legal affairs for Save the Sound. “From sewage treatment plant upgrades to engineering designs, green infrastructure to sea level rise preparedness, these historic levels of funding will support innovative solutions that will benefit our environment and keep our communities safe today and tomorrow.”
The Bond Commission authorized $110 million in General Obligation Bonds to provide grant money for projects and $370 million in Revenue Bonds to provide low-interest loans from a revolving fund. Some funded projects include:
• Metropolitan District Commission’s Clean Water Project, the next stage in a 20-year modernization of the Greater Hartford area’s sanitary sewer system for improvements at the Hartford treatment plant, rehabilitation of sanitary sewers in the region, and design of an overflow tunnel for wastewater in rainstorms.
• Phosphorous removal improvement at the Bristol Wastewater Treatment Plant, which will protect the Pequabuck River.
• Upgrading old infrastructure and increasing nitrogen removal capacity at the Norwich Wastewater Treatment Plant.
• A variety of local initiatives including green infrastructure projects, sea level rise resiliency, and improvements to pump stations.
As the primary mechanism for funding wastewater treatment and sewer projects in Connecticut, Clean Water Funds are a backbone of the state’s infrastructure. The funds focus on two critical tasks: stopping over a billion gallons of raw sewage a year from flowing into rivers and Long Island Sound, and restoring the Sound’s low-oxygen “dead zone” that harms the environment and economy of Long Island Sound.
Save the Sound is a steering committee member of the Clean Water Investment Coalition, which advocates for consistent clean water funding to protect critical jobs, vibrant local industries, and a clean and sewage-free Long Island Sound. Coalition members include: American Council of Engineering Companies of Connecticut, Audubon Connecticut, Connecticut Audubon Society, Connecticut Commercial Lobstermen’s Association, Connecticut Conference of Municipalities, Connecticut Construction Industries Association, Connecticut Council of Small Towns, Connecticut Environmental and Utilities Contractors Association, Connecticut Marine Trades Association, Connecticut River Watershed Council, Connecticut State Building Trades Council, Connecticut Water Pollution Abatement Association, Connecticut Water Works Association, Environment Connecticut, Greater New Haven Water Pollution Control Authority, Housatonic Valley Association, International Union of Operating Engineers Local 478, Metropolitan District Commission, Rivers Alliance of Connecticut, Save the Sound—a bi-state program of Connecticut Fund for the Environment, The Nature Conservancy, The Sierra Club, and Southern New England Fishermen and Lobstermen Association.