Tester Delivers Second Round of American Rescue Plan Funding for Montana Water Infrastructure Projects

Senator was the only statewide elected official in Montana to support the American Rescue Plan and its investments

U.S. Senator Jon Tester today announced that the state of Montana released the ranked list of project applications for the second round of American Rescue Plan Act competitive water and sewer grants secured by Tester in the legislation.

Tester helped negotiate the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), which provided this funding, and he was the only Montana statewide elected official that supported the legislation. Thanks to the ARPA, Montana’s unemployment rate is currently at the lowest rate in state history.

“Water infrastructure is absolutely critical if Montana communities are going to have economic certainty and growth, and unfortunately, too many of our areas are dependent on outdated and unreliable systems,” said Tester. “I’m proud to have secured these investments through the American Rescue Plan to upgrade and rebuild water and sewer systems across the state. I’m looking forward to seeing these dollars finally out the door and to projects on the ground as quickly as possible after the Infrastructure Advisory Committee hearing next week.”

A total of $262 million worth of applications were submitted for water and sewer projects across the state as well as $10.9 million in applications for irrigation projects. Projects will be competing for $128.2 million in ARPA funding specified for water and sewer infrastructure, which is a part of the $900 million Coronavirus State Fiscal Relief Fund Tester secured for the state of Montana to respond to the economic effects of the pandemic.

The state’s ARPA Infrastructure Advisory Commission will make the final recommendation to the state of which projects to approve on Wednesday, April 20, 2022.

In 2020, Tester held hundreds of meetings with Montana’s workers, small business owners, frontline health care workers, educators, Tribes, and local officials to solicit input about what Montanans need to make it through the pandemic. Tester used that input to help craft the American Rescue Plan, which provided $20 billion in vaccine funding, $382 million for Montana K-12 schools, legislation to restore long-distance service to the Empire Builder Amtrak route, and billions for small businesses, rural hospitals and the Department of Veterans Affairs.