Tester Announces $63 Million for Montana Water Projects from his Bipartisan Infrastructure Law
Funding to improve critical wastewater and drinking water systems
As a part of his recently passed bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, U.S. Senator Jon Tester today announced $63,041,000 in Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) funding for communities in Montana to invest in critical wastewater and drinking water infrastructure projects.
“Montanans have the right to a clean and healthful environment under our state’s constitution, and water plays a key role in preserving that right” said Tester. “I was proud to secure this funding in our bipartisan infrastructure law to ensure that folks across the state have reliable access to clean drinking water and proper sanitation, create good paying Montana jobs, and guarantee that our state remains safe and healthy for generations to come.”
This funding will be administered through the EPA’s State Revolving Fund (SRF) programs and will be used to build drinking water and wastewater treatment infrastructure, and to address key challenges like lead in drinking water and per/poly-fluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) contamination. The funding comes as a direct result from Senator Tester’s bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, and additional funding will be released over a five year period.
Tester worked across the aisle for months to negotiate this agreement with a group of five Republicans, four Democrats, and the White House, and he was the only member of Montana’s congressional delegation to vote for it. Tester’s law is projected to create more than 800,000 American jobs and lower costs for businesses by making targeted investments that will strengthen our nation without raising taxes on working families.
As a lead author of the bill, Tester made sure that it does not raise taxes. He secured significant wins for Montana in the legislation, including $2.82 billion for Montana’s roads, highways and bridges; up to $100 million for the Milk River Project and $1 billion to complete all authorized rural water projects through the Bureau of Reclamation; $42.45 billion for broadband deployment to low-connectivity areas across the country; and $3.37 billion to reduce wildfire risk nationwide, among others. Tester also worked to ensure that all iron, steel, and construction materials used for these projects must be made in America.
Additional water infrastructure provisions from the law can be found below, and a full list of all provisions can be found HERE.
- $1 billion to complete all authorized rural water projects through the Bureau of Reclamation, including Fort Peck/Dry Prairie, Rocky Boys/North Central, and Musselshell-Judith rural water systems.
- Approximately $198 million for Rocky Boys/North Central.
- Approximately $56 million for Musselshell-Judith.
- Approximately $17 million for Fort Peck/Dry Prairie.
- Up to $100 million for rehabilitating the Milk River Project.
- $2.5 billion to complete all authorized Indian water rights settlements, including settlements for Montana Tribes.
- Clarifies that American Rescue Plan state and local fiscal recovery funds may be used towards the state or federal cost share to rehabilitate Bureau of Reclamation water infrastructure. $3.5 billion for Indian Health Service Sanitation Construction program, filling all outstanding needs in the program nationwide.
- This includes roughly $40 million in water, sewage, and sanitation projects for the Blackfeet Tribe.
- $11.2 billion in grants for states and Tribes to reclaim abandoned mine lands. Montana is expected to receive at least $20 million, over six times the state’s annual federal Abandoned Mine Land distribution.