Introduction

The Massachusetts Drinking Water State Revolving Fund (DWSRF) provides low-cost financing to help community public water suppliers comply with federal and state drinking water requirements. The DWSRF Program's goals are to protect public health and strengthen compliance with drinking water requirements, while addressing the Commonwealth's drinking water needs. The Program incorporates affordability and watershed management priorities.

The DWSRF Program is jointly administered by the Division of Municipal Services of MassDEP and the Massachusetts Clean Water Trust (Trust). This year, MassDEP will solicit projects from Massachusetts municipalities and community water systems (with at least 15 residential connections) to be considered for subsidized loans. The current subsidy level is provided via a 2% interest loan. The Program will operate with approximately $100-125 million in financing annually.

Eligible Projects

Financial assistance is available for engineering and construction of drinking water projects, including new wastewater treatment facilities that protect public health and strengthen compliance with federal and state drinking water regulations. Eligible projects include:

  • new and upgraded drinking water treatment facilities;
  • projects to replace contaminated sources, new water treatment, or storage facilities;
  • consolidation or restructuring of water systems;
  • projects and system activities that provide treatment, or effective alternatives to treatment, to comply with regulated health standards; and
  • installation or replacement of transmission or distribution systems.

Examples of ineligible projects include dams, purchase of water rights, reservoirs, lab fees, fire protection projects, operation and maintenance, and other non-capital expenses.

Project Rating

To be considered for funding, a public water supplier must complete a project evaluation form (PEF) during the project solicitation period (June-August). The application requires thorough documentation of the project's benefits to public health or drinking water quality; local funding authorization; and a commitment from the borrower to proceed to project implementation in a timely manner. MassDEP ranks the projects using a rating system which assigns points on the basis of public health-centric criteria. Projects addressing the most significant health issues earn the highest rankings. Criteria include the extent to which the proposal:

  • eliminates or mitigates a public health risk;
  • is necessary to achieve or maintain compliance with applicable drinking water quality requirements;
  • is affordable to users in the service area;
  • consolidates or restructures a public water system;
  • implements, or is consistent with, watershed management plans (or addresses a watershed priority) and
  • is consistent with local and regional growth or infrastructure plans.

DWSRF Timelines for 2017

Submit PEF: August 2017
Appropriate Local Funds: No later than June 30 2018
File Loan Application: No later than October 15 2018
MassDEP Issues PAC: No later than December 31 2018
Project must begin within 6 months of PAC issuance

For More Information

MassDEP Municipal Services Staff in Boston:
Steve McCurdy, Director, 617-292-5779
Jane Peirce, Deputy Director, 617-292-5808

Clean Water State Revolving Fund

Massachusetts Clean Water Trust (MCWT)