BOSTON – State Senator Benjamin B. Downing (D – Pittsfield) and State Representative Denis E. Guyer (D – Dalton) announced today that the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) has selected the Town of Lanesborough to receive a $150,000 low-interest loan from the 2007 Clean Water State Revolving Fund (SRF) to develop a comprehensive wastewater management plan.
“Massachusetts State Revolving Funds are a low-cost funding source allowing municipalities to improve infrastructure when they might otherwise not be able to afford it,” said Downing. “Now, Lanesborough will be able to examine appropriate solutions to upgrading their wastewater management plan.”
Annual grants from the federal government provide seed money for the Massachusetts SRF programs. Matching state funds leverage the federal contribution to make it possible for qualifying municipalities, wastewater districts and water suppliers to borrow money at 2 percent interest for a range of environmental infrastructure projects. “I’m pleased that DEP has awarded this grant to the town of Lanesborough. This plan will help keep the environment clean, improving the quality of life in the town,” said Guyer.
The Clean Water SRF for 2007 will provide $397.8 million in financing for 66 construction and planning projects aimed at eliminating combined sewer overflows, upgrading wastewater treatment facilities, extending sewers and developing long-term wastewater management plans. Massachusetts has awarded nearly $3.9 billion in Clean Water SRF loans since the program’s inception in 1991.
The SRF grants are among dozens awarded through a state system for distributing funding that rewards communities that are planning for more concentrated development near existing infrastructure. Cities and towns inform the state about initiatives to produce more housing or conserve open space. Then each community receives a score, which is factored into the decision to award grants and loans.
“Through the State Revolving Fund, Massachusetts has made a substantial commitment to local water and sewer systems, which is a key component of state efforts to protect the environment and the public health,” MassDEP Acting Commissioner Arleen O’Donnell said. “These important projects will prevent water pollution and help rehabilitate current infrastructure so that communities can plan for a better future.”