Mar 27, 2007

New York DEC Announces Nearly $11 Million in Grants to Improve Water Quality

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation announced $10,851,331 million in grants for 58 Water Quality Improvement Projects (WQIP) that will help reduce polluted runoff, improve water quality, and restore habitat in New York State waters.

A total of $4,879,830 will be awarded to 37 municipalities and Soil and Water Conservation Districts across the state to assist with projects to reduce pollution from stormwater runoff, improve the storage and handling of road salt and reduce pollution from malfunctioning septic systems (major sources of water pollution in New York), as well as projects that will improve stream habitat.

A total of $2,655,511 will be awarded for 14 projects designed to help 132 municipalities in Dutchess, Westchester, Putnam, Rockland, Schenectady, Albany, Rensselaer, Washington, Tompkins, Ontario, Wayne, Monroe, and Erie counties. This funding is being awarded to urban municipalities to comply with the federal Clean Water Act’s Phase II stormwater controls by developing and implementing required stormwater management programs.

An additional $2,742,990 will be awarded to six municipalities along the upper Hudson River to implement seasonal disinfection at their wastewater treatment facilities and abate combined sewer overflows. The projects announced today will further improve water quality and help to restore swimming in many locations along the Hudson River, a Natural Heritage River.

The Village of Patchogue in Suffolk County will receive $573,000 from the 1996 Clean Water/Clean Air Bond Act to improve the operations of their wastewater treatment facilities. The project addresses priorities identified in management plans developed for the Peconic Estuary, including the reduction of nitrogen from wastewater treatment plants.

The Department periodically issues a call for projects, evaluates applications, and ranks projects for funding under the WQIP process. This is the ninth round of WQIP funding, and a total of 180 applications were received. State assistance payments will fund up to 50 percent of the costs for the projects announced.