01.12.21, Lenexa, Kansas – Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced that projects in Kansas City, Bonner Springs, and Johnson County, Kansas; and one Cedar Rapids, Iowa, project are being invited to apply for approximately $500 million in Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA) loans.

Fifty-five projects in 20 states are being invited to apply for $5.1 billion nationally. This funding will help finance over $12 billion in clean water and drinking water infrastructure projects to protect public health and improve water quality in communities across the United States.

“EPA built one of the greatest financing tools for investing in America’s water infrastructure in history when it stood up the WIFIA program in 2018,” said EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler. “These 55 new projects will facilitate $12 billion in water infrastructure to help address some of the most pressing challenges faced by water systems across this country.”

Selected projects in the Kansas City metropolitan area include:

  • Kansas City, Kansas, Community-Based Partnership – Stormwater Program – invited WIFIA loan amount: $78 million
  • Bonner Springs Water Supply and Treatment Plant Project – invited WIFIA loan amount: $11 million
  • Johnson County Wastewater – Wastewater Integrated Management Plan: Foundation Project Delivery Program – invited WIFIA loan amount: $243 million

Selected project in Iowa includes:

  • Cedar Rapids Water Pollution Control Facility Improvements – invited WIFIA loan amount: $218 million

Since the first WIFIA loan closed in 2018, EPA has announced 41 loans that are providing $7.8 billion in credit assistance to help finance $16.8 billion for water infrastructure, while creating over 38,800 jobs and saving ratepayers $3.7 billion. EPA received 67 letters of interest from both public and private entities in response to the 2020 WIFIA Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA). After a robust statutorily-required review process, the WIFIA Selection Committee chose 55 prospective borrowers’ projects to submit applications for loans and placed three prospective borrowers on a waiting list.

The WIFIA program is expanding its geographic scope by inviting entities from Alabama, Iowa, Ohio, Texas, and West Virginia for the first time. Four prospective borrowers that submitted letters of interest in response to a previous WIFIA NOFA resubmitted them for 2020 and have been invited to proceed in the 2020 funding round. Seven borrowers who already received a WIFIA loan or are in the process of closing a loan were invited to apply for additional financing. This action complements EPA’s November 2020 announcement that California, Iowa, and Rhode Island were invited to apply for a total of $695 million in loans through EPA’s new state infrastructure financing authority WIFIA (SWIFIA) program.

WIFIA Program Background

Established by the Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act of 2014, the WIFIA program is a federal loan and guarantee program administered by EPA. WIFIA’s aim is to accelerate investment in the nation’s water infrastructure by providing long-term, low-cost supplemental credit assistance for regionally and nationally significant projects. The WIFIA program has an active pipeline of pending applications for projects that will result in billions of dollars in water infrastructure investment and thousands of jobs.

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