Tester Secures $22.8 Million for Tribal Water Projects

Funding comes from the Senator’s bipartisan infrastructure law

As a direct result of his bipartisan infrastructure law, U.S. Senator Jon Tester has secured $22,800,000 for rural water projects to deliver clean, reliable water in Fort Peck and Rocky Boy. 

Tester worked with five Republicans and four Democrats to negotiate his bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) and was the only member of Montana’s Congressional delegation to vote for the bill. He specifically secured the provision that includes these investments for Montana’s rural water projects.

“There is no need more critical to the health of our communities than access to safe, reliable drinking water — and folks in Indian Country need Congress to uphold its trust responsibilities so they can develop and maintain their water resources,” said Tester. “These vital investments in our water infrastructure will improve wellness, boost economic development, and put more folks to work, and I’m proud to have secured this funding from my bipartisan infrastructure law.”

The funding will be allocated as follows:

  • $9.8 million for the Fort Peck Reservation/Dry Prairie in Montana to fund the Pines Service Area Project.
  • $13 million for the Rocky Boys / North Central Montana Rural Water System in Montana to continue construction of core pipeline and begin construction of on-reservation facilities. Funding will also be used to continue construction of non-core segments, such as the Town of Chester. 

Tester has worked tirelessly to ensure that rural communities have access to modern, reliable water infrastructure. 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.

Tester secured significant wins for Montana in the IIJA, including $2.82 billion for Montana’s roads, highways and bridges; $2.5 billion to complete all authorized Indian water rights settlements; $1 billion to complete all authorized rural water projects through the Bureau of Reclamation; $65 billion to deploy broadband to areas across the country that lack internet access and additionally make online connectivity affordable; 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.

A full list of Montana provisions in Tester’s bipartisan infrastructure law can be found HERE.