The Environmental Protection Agency has awarded $100 million to the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality to help them recover from the water crisis plaguing the region, reports MLive.
The funds are part of the Water Infrastructure Improvements for the Nation Act, which was approved in 2016. The money was officially awarded on Friday, and will help the city accelerate programs to replace service lines that have leached lead in to the city’s water supply.
“The people of Flint and all Americans deserve a more responsive federal government,” said EPA head Scott Pruitt. “EPA will especially focus on helping Michigan improve Flint’s water infrastructure as part of our larger goal of improving America’s water infrastructure.”
Flint Mayor Karen Weaver said she was ‘excited and very grateful’ to receive the aid from the federal government.
“The city of Flint being awarded a grant of this magnitude in such a critical time of need will be a huge benefit,” said Weaver. “As we prepare to start the next phase of the … pipe replacement program, these funds will give us what we need to reach our goal of replacing 6,000 pipes this year and make other needed infrastructure improvements. We look forward to the continued support of the EPA and federal government.”
The new funding is a supplement to the EPA’s State Revolving Fund (SRF), which supplies over $30 billion to states in need of infrastructure repair.
“Under President Trump’s budget blueprint, SRF remains fully funded, and the proposal provides robust funding for the Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act program to finance critical drinking and wastewater infrastructure,” the EPA said in a statement.
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