WIFTA PENNVEST Lead Line Replacement Initiative
INITIATIVE DESCRIPTION, GOALS AND INTENT
On October 4, 2019, the Water Infrastructure Funding Transfer Act (WIFTA) was signed into law. This statute temporarily expands the Clean Water to Drinking Water State Revolving Fund (SRF) transfer authority specifically to address lead-related threats to public health in drinking water.
In addition to the existing inter-SRF transfer authority, WIFTA authorizes states to transfer no more than five percent of the amount of the states' cumulative CWSRF federal grants to the state's DWSRF to be used as principal forgiveness.
PENNVEST anticipates approximately $93 million may be subject to the SRF transfer and available in the form of principal forgiveness loans to address remediation of lead in drinking water in the Commonwealth. All awards are anticipated in 2021.
Drinking water system or facility owners or operators are eligible to apply, provided they are otherwise authorized to make application under the PENNVEST Act. The system or facility may be privately or publically owned or operated.
Drinking water projects otherwise eligible under the PENNVEST Act with adequately mapped and designated lead line replacement areas are eligible. The replacement must be a full line replacement for both the public and private sides of laterals ending at the homeowner's foundation to be eligible.
Applicants with eligible projects will compete for principal forgiveness loan awards. Awards will be distributed among all eligible applicants. Should the total dollar amount requested exceed the funds available under the SRF transfer, the principal forgiveness loans will be prorated across all eligible projects with the difference made up of a low interest loan.
The deadline for this initiative will be February 3, 2021, which is the application cutoff date for projects to be considered at the April 21, 2021 PENNVEST Board Meeting. All applications will be received electronically through the PENNVEST Portal and processed through traditional workflows. Additionally, the following will apply:
1. Project eligible activities must only be related to drinking water lead line replacement work.
2. Projects must have completed a planning consultation with DEP and PENNVEST Staff and have satisfactorily mapped and engineered the designated lead line replacement areas.
3. Both the public and private sides of service laterals are required to be replaced as part of the project in order to achieve full lateral replacement.
4. All environmental permits should be in hand, applicants must demonstrate readiness to proceed, and a detailed implementation schedule must be provided.