Colorado Water
The health of our waters is the principal measure of how we live on the land. -- Luna Leopold

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Sunday, August 19, 2007

The Moderate Voice: " Donate to Peru earthquake relief."

12:34:26 PM    

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Here's a look at Colorado's water infrastructure requirements from The Pueblo Chieftain. From the article:

Water systems in Colorado are facing increased funding needs as infrastructure ages and new water quality legislation tightens restrictions. "The need is out there," Kevin Bommer of the Colorado Municipal League told state lawmakers last week. "Many communities are running out of money and don't have the means to get back into compliance." Bommer made his comments to the Water Resources Review Committee of the state Legislature as it considered a wide range of water issues.

There are about $2.3 billion in water projects on the drawing board across the state right now. While some communities are prepared to fund the needed projects, many smaller communities find themselves in a bind...

Water projects get state funding from four agencies: the Department of Health and Public Environment, Department of Local Affairs, Water Conservation Board and Water Resources, and Power Development Authority. Each reviewed its current programs for the committee.

The department of health provides loans through a revolving fund for improvements to drinking water and wastewater disposal. Steve Gunderson, director of the water quality control division of the health department, said $398 million is needed for drinking water systems and $375 million for wastewater systems in the state. During the past year, 48 systems faced acute needs - having to boil water or deal with water line breaks that crippled their systems - totaling $19 million. In the coming year, 40 systems are expected to be out of compliance with federal drinking water standards. Challenges will be faced in meeting ammonia standards for wastewater plants, removal of radionuclides and replacing aging infrastructure, Gunderson said...

Barry Cress of the Department of Local Affairs explained the department issues funds for water projects on the basis of needs and recommendations from the state health department through Energy Impact Assistance and Community Development Block Grants. A map of the state shows the poorest regions are the Lower Arkansas and Rio Grande valleys. In 2006, 33 DOLA sewer grants totaled $10.2 million, with eight grants totaling $1.87 million awarded to Southern Colorado communities. Another 41 grants totaling $12.8 million went for water grants, with 17 loans for $2.5 million going for Southern Colorado projects. The CWCB's revolving fund program is expected to have about $80 million available for loans in 2007, with about $300 million in backlogged requests, said finance chief Mike Serlet. This year's water bill provided loans of $75.7 million toward Aurora's Prairie Waters Project, $60.6 million toward the Arkansas Valley Conduit and $8.8 million for a Penrose pipeline and reservoir project. Another $5 million went toward grants for various water projects across the state. The CWCB also administers mineral severance tax grants through the Interbasin Compact Committee for water activities approved by nine basin roundtables. About $42 million in water projects is expected to be funded through the Water Reserve Account.

The Water Resources and Power Development Authority provides funds to develop water supply systems and currently is administering 297 loans for $1.5 billion, said executive director Dan Law. Funds are available through revolving funds and annual federal appropriations. Through 2007, the state has received $212 million through the Water Pollution Control Revolving Fund and $140 million through the Drinking Water Revolving Fund. The state has provided $42 million and $28 million respectively in matching funds for the two funds. Loans are for drinking water, water pollution control, small water resources and water revenue bonds.

Category: Colorado Water

8:08:05 AM    

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