U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin
Press Release

Senator Baldwin Applauds USDA’s $114.5 Million Investment to Build and Improve Critical Infrastructure in Rural Wisconsin

Funding Will Expand Access to Clean Water and Dependable Electric Power in People’s Homes and Businesses in Rural Communities

By - Dec 16th, 2021 04:52 pm

Washington, D.C. – Senator Tammy Baldwin is applauding the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Tom Vilsack’s announcement that USDA is investing $114.5 million to build and improve critical infrastructure in rural Wisconsin. The investments will help expand access to clean water and reliable electricity in people’s homes and businesses in rural communities across the state.

“Every Wisconsin community needs access to clean drinking water, an environment free of toxic chemicals, high-speed internet, and stable electricity,” said Senator Baldwin. “Alongside the investments from the bipartisan infrastructure bill that I supported, the Biden administration’s commitment to rural communities will help make that reality, while also creating good-paying jobs across the state.”

“When we invest in rural infrastructure, we invest in the livelihoods and health of people in rural America,” Secretary Vilsack said. “Under the leadership of President Biden and Vice president Harris, USDA is committed to rebuilding America’s rural infrastructure by expanding access to broadband, clean drinking water and resilient power infrastructure. The investments we are announcing today will drive the creation of good-paying union jobs and grow the economy sustainably and equitably so that everyone gets ahead for decades to come.”

This announcement follows the recent passage of the Senator Baldwin-supported Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and reflects the many ways USDA Rural Development’s programs are helping people, businesses and communities address critical infrastructure needs to help rural America build back better.

For example:

  • The city of Bloomer will use $27.6 million under the Water and Waste Disposal Loan and Grant Program to replace all lead service lines, lead-jointed water main pipes and sanitary sewer mains. These improvements will help the city to reduce lead limits in their water distribution system for its 3,539 community members. Funding also will help to prevent inflow and infiltration issues from cracked piping.
  • The city of Waterloo will use $21.1 million to replace aging wastewater treatment facility infrastructure and meet current and future effluent limits, including phosphorus. Nearly 3,400 people will benefit from these improvements.
  • The village of Wonewoc will use $10.1 million to renovate and expand the wastewater treatment facility and address overflow issues. This investment will benefit 816 community members.
  • The city of Chetek will use $20.7 million to upgrade the wastewater treatment plant and address several code violations for residential and commercial structures within 500 feet of the site. More than 2,200 people will benefit from these improvements.
  • The village of Turtle Lake will use $21.8 million to upgrade the wastewater treatment plant and sewer system and address excessive phosphorus and chloride limits. These improvement will benefit 1,050 people.
  • Scenic Rivers Energy Coop will use a $13.2 million loan under the Electric Infrastructure Loan and Loan Guarantee Program to build 2.2 new miles of line and a new headquarters facilities. Scenic Rivers serves 14,289 consumers over 3,528 miles of line in Grant, Richland, Green, Crawford, Iowa, Lafayette and Vernon counties in Wisconsin, as well as Jo Daviess and Stephenson counties in Illinois.

Vilsack highlighted six investments in rural Wisconsin that USDA is making in two programs designed to help people access clean water and dependable electric power. These programs are the Electric Infrastructure Loan and Loan Guarantee Program and Water and Waste Disposal Loan and Grant Program.

The investments announced today will support rural infrastructure projects in Barron, Chippewa, Crawford, Grant, Green, Iowa, Jefferson, Juneau, Lafayette and Vernon counties.

Under the Biden-Harris Administration, Rural Development provides loans and grants to help expand economic opportunities, create jobs and improve the quality of life for millions of Americans in rural areas. This assistance supports infrastructure improvements; business development; housing; community facilities such as schools, public safety and health care; and high-speed internet access in rural, Tribal and high-poverty areas.

An online version of this release is here.

Mentioned in This Press Release

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