Tester Announces $101.5 Million for Montana Rural Water Systems From His Bipartisan Infrastructure Law

Funding is first round of approximately $271 million for Montana rural water systems in senator’s Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act

U.S. Senator Jon Tester today announced $101.5 million in investments from his bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) for the Rocky Boy’s/North Central Montana Regional Water System, the Musselshell-Judith Rural Water System, and the Fort Peck Reservation/Dry Prairie Rural Water System.

Tester negotiated the IIJA and helped pass it into law last year, and specifically secured the provision that includes these investments for Montana rural water projects. Tester was the only member of Montana’s Congressional delegation to support the bipartisan legislation.

“These rural water systems are essential to growing communities and creating jobs in central and eastern Montana,” said Tester. “I wrote this bipartisan legislation so that these long-delayed infrastructure projects can finally be completed and we can provide long-term water certainty for folks across our state. I’m going to keep holding the Administration accountable to getting these targeted investments out the door and into communities as quickly as possible so we can growing our state’s rural economy.”

The IIJA investments announced by Tester include:

  • $57.5 million for the Rocky Boy’s/North Central Montana Regional Water System to support continuing the build-out of the system. This includes core and non-core pipeline segments and the water treatment plant that will serve the Chippewa Cree Tribe, Havre, Tiber, Big Sandy, and Loma service areas.
  • $37 million for the Musselshell-Judith Rural Water System to support phase 2 of the rural water distribution network, which will ultimately serve six incorporated communities, several unincorporated communities, and many rural families in central Montana.
  • $7 million for the Fort Peck Reservation/Dry Prairie Rural Water System to support continued advancement of the Fort Peck Reservation Western project distribution pipelines.

Today’s announcement is the first round of $1 billion in total funding to complete all authorized rural water projects through the Bureau of Reclamation. In total in the IIJA, Tester secured approximately $194 million for the Rocky Boys/North Central Water System, approximately $56 million for the Musselshell-Judith Water System, and approximately $17 million for the Fort Peck/Dry Prairie Water System. He also secured, up to $100 million for rehabilitating the Milk River Project, and he announced $85 million of that funding earlier this week.

Tester worked across the aisle for months to negotiate his bipartisan package 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.

Tester secured significant wins for Montana in the legislation, including $2.82 billion for Montana’s roads, highways and bridges; $2.5 billion to complete all authorized Indian water rights settlements; $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.