The Trust is authorized to issue bonds, guaranteed by reserves that are funded by federal grants and Commonwealth matching funds, to provide subsidized financing for these projects. The Commonwealth also provides annual support in the form of contract assistance for debt service on the bonds. As of June 30, 2011 the Trust has funded over $5.2 billion of projects through the issuance of bonds and direct loans for more than 292 governmental units across the Commonwealth, ranging in scope from secondary wastewater treatment and drinking water treatment plants to individual septic systems.


It is the function of the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) to determine which of the potential projects in the communities should be undertaken based on an evaluation of environmental and public health issues. The Trust is responsible for financing those projects. The Executive Office for Administration and Finance ensures that the Commonwealth can support the level of financial subsidies provided for by state statute for the projects chosen.