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Congressman Dan Kildee Advocates for Federal Funding for Water Infrastructure Improvement Projects for Flint, Other Older, Industrial Cities

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Bipartisan Effort Led by Kildee Seeks Funding for Clean Water State Revolving Fund to Provide Critical Investments and Repairs to Aging Municipal Water Systems

WASHINGTON, D.C. – March 25, 2015 – (RealEstateRama) — Congressman Dan Kildee (MI-05), in a continued effort to invest in and improve local water infrastructure and delivery systems, has written to the Appropriations Committee requesting that they support adequate funding for the Clean Water State Revolving Loan Fund and the Safe Drinking Water Revolving Loan Fund, these two critical federal programs could help to improve the city of Flint’s aging water system.

The bipartisan letter, which was signed by 48 Members of Congress – including Democrats and Republicans – comes as the city of Flint continues to look for ways to improve its water system.

“The need for this investment in our water infrastructure is without question,” the letter reads. “Through the [Clean Water State Revolving Fund’s] investment programs, states provide loans to local communities or utilities to support upgrades and replacements of water distribution pipelines, treatment plants, sewer lines and other similar infrastructure. This funding is critical as it helps communities maintain safe and effective drinking water infrastructure and affords states the flexibility to fund their highest-priority projects.”

The American Society for Civil Engineers’ 2013 study emphasized that the nation’s drinking water and wastewater infrastructure was in poor condition, finding that the system exhibits “significant deterioration.” In particular, older, industrial cities like Flint face unique challenges due to the loss of thousands of automotive and manufacturing jobs, which has led to declining local tax revenue, lower housing prices, fewer local services and less investment in community development projects.

Last month, Congressman Kildee also testified before the House Budget Committee, advocating for critical investments to improve aging infrastructure, including funding for previously successful programs like the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program. Federal funding for CDBG, which is given to states and used for a variety of community development projects, has been repeatedly cut over past years.

“The CDBG program is one example of a program we should be investing in as a nation. Now is not the time to turn our backs on America’s older, industrial cities and cut successful programs that can help these neighborhoods feel the rising tide of an economic recovery,” Congressman Kildee said in his prepared remarks. “The budget is our chance to say to people living in cities like Flint, Saginaw and Bay City – we believe in you and we will invest in your future. And we will give you a fair shot to succeed and prosper in this great nation of ours.”

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