U.S. EPA Announces Availability of $1.5 Million in Environmental Justice Small Grants

CONTACT: press@epa.gov

U.S. EPA Announces Availability of $1.5 Million in Environmental Justice Small Grants

WASHINGTON (November 15, 2018) — Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced the availability of $1.5 million for Environmental Justice Small Grants (EJSG). These funds will be distributed to approximately 50 community-based organizations nationwide that will work to address environmental justice issues in local communities. Each recipient will receive up to $30,000 for one-year, community-driven projects that engage, educate, and empower communities to better understand local environmental and public health issues and to identify ways to address these issues at the local level.

“EPA is committed to assisting low-income and disadvantaged communities that are often disproportionally impacted by environmental risks or hazards,” said EPA Acting Administrator Andrew Wheeler. “These grants will help local communities across the country address critical environmental challenges, such as reducing air pollution, combatting lead exposure, and improving water quality.”

As part of their projects, grant recipients will also collaborate with other stakeholders from across business, industry, local government, academia, and/or other grassroots organizations in an effort to realize project goals and build project sustainability.

Given projected increases in extreme weather events and the vulnerability of underserved populations, this opportunity will emphasize projects that address emergency preparedness and increase resiliency, as well as projects that include the needs of US military veterans and homeless populations.

This year’s Environmental Justice Small Grants program will also include $300,000 in support from EPA’s Urban Waters program. EPA’s Environmental Justice and Urban Waters programs partnered on the 2018 Environmental Justice Collaborative Problem-Solving (EJCPS) Cooperative Agreement program, with Urban Waters funding two of the ten projects awarded. This latest support from Urban Waters will promote continued collaboration between the two EPA programs and further benefit communities disproportionately impacted by environmental and public health issues by reconnecting urban communities with their waterways while encouraging community stewardship.

The application period for the 2018 EJSG will remain open until February 15, 2019. All eligible organizations are encouraged to apply.

For more information about EPA’s Environmental Justice Small Grants program: https://www.epa.gov/environmentaljustice/environmental-justice-small-grants-program

Storey County Breaks Ground on $2.12 Million 5-Mile Water Line Project


Storey County today broke ground on a $2.1 million water project to replace a water line originally built in the 1870s. Over 1,450 feet of new water main will be constructed to connect Virginia City to the 5-mile Reservoir. USDA Rural Development’s Rural Utilities Service provided a 40-year Water and Waste Disposal loan for the project, which was obligated in 2016. ”
Full story here – https://www.rd.usda.gov/newsroom/news-release/storey-county-breaks-ground-212-million-5-mile-water-line-project-celebrates

NvRWA USDA Loan Assistance

NvRWA can assist your community with the USDA loan application, including on-line applications!

Just give us a call, email us a note or fill out the form below to get in touch.  

Bob Foerster
Executive Director
Front page photo credits @Bob Wick BLM

Historic Funding Available for Rural Water and Waste Water Infrastructure

Carson City, NV – In March 2018, Congress provided a historic level of funding that included $5.2 billion for United States Department of Agriculture, USDA, loans and grants for water and wastewater infrastructure in rural communities under 10,000 population.  At this level, USDA, under the leadership of Secretary Sonny Perdue, have the necessary resources to completely address the $3 billion backlog and ensure additional investments are targeted to rural communities with the greatest infrastructure needs.

“For decades, elected officials from the local county supervisor to the President have placed aging infrastructure as one of the top priorities.  These efforts have now come to fruition,” NRWA CEO Sam Wade stated. “Small communities and rural water and wastewater systems are highly encouraged to apply for USDA loans and grants now. Since Congress has clearly recognized the need by providing robust funding levels, we must fully utilize these resources to strengthen Rural Water.”  Replacement projects, upgrades needed to existing assets and other work not needing extensive environmental review, that could be started very soon are candidates for funding in the current cycle. Please consider for immediate action near-term items on your capital improvement plan, or items that have shown signs of failure, such as mains with a history of numerous breaks. If your system is not fully metered, this availability of funds now presents a great opportunity.

Rural community leaders can apply for these funds electronically by using the interactive RD Apply tool https://www.rd.usda.gov/programs-services/rd-apply

  • They can also apply, or get assistance with an application through one of USDA Rural Development’s state or field offices. In Nevada the contacts are: 775-887-1222, Community Programs Director – Cheryl Couch – x4760 Community Programs Loan Specialist – Lisa Goodfellow – x4761. In the Elko office, the contact is: Community Programs Loan Specialist – Maria Murillo on 775-738-8468 x107.  Please give USDA RD a call to talk about your project.
  • “Robust, modern infrastructure is foundational for quality of life and economic opportunity – no matter what zip code you live in, ”Assistant to the Secretary for Rural Development Anne Hazlett said in a news release on July 16, 2018. “Under Secretary Perdue’s leadership, USDA is committed to be a strong partner in addressing rural infrastructure needs to support a more prosperous future in rural communities.”

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