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House AG Appropriations Bill Includes Water Funding

The FY 13 Agriculture appropriations bill passed the Agriculture Subcommittee earlier this week. Among the various programs included in the measure are several that support the drinking water and wastewater needs of small, rural communities. The Rural Community Facilities Program Account would be funded at $2.2 billion for loans and grants that support water and other infrastructure needs (such as hospitals) in rural areas. The Rural Utilities Service (RUS) account also funds loans and grants for rural water, wastewater, solid waste, and other environmental programs. In FY 13, the House bill would fund RUS at a total of $484,499,000 of which:

  • $18,620,000 is for technical assistance to rural water and wastewater systems
  • $14,700,000 is for contracted circuit rider programs
  • $784,000 is for a Native American organization to provide technical assistance to tribes
  • $5,635,000 is for a “qualified nonprofit, multi-state regional technical assistance organization with experience in working with small (<3300) rural communities on planning, finance, development, and O&M of water and wastewater systems”

The measure is now in line for attention from the full House Appropriations Committee.