The Vermont Agency of Natural Resources plans to invest $100 million dollars in COVID-19 relief funding on water infrastructure projects. On Thursday, Secretary of Natural Resources Julie Moore hosted a meeting to discuss a variety of environmental topics, and where the money will go to.
The American rescue plan act will administer funding to towns, commercial entities, and individuals in the state.
“This will allow us to make strategic investments in storm water management, reducing sewer overflows,” Moore said. “Working with mobile home parks and and low income Vermonters to ensure that they have adequate wastewater treatment and safe drinking water.”
The legislature and the administration looked at ways to invest those funds and they agreed on five broad areas.
“Broadband infrastructure, climate action, housing, economic development and clean water,” Moore said.
There will also be assistance for economically disadvantaged communities to help protect them from future crises.
“Ensuring that homeowners have access to good waste water treatment,” Moore said. “Healthy drinking water at a cost they can afford.”
These dollars will help reduce sewer overflows and help protect water quality.
“During periods of intense rain we can experience sewer overflows and those periods of intense rain are occurring more frequently as a result of climate change,” Moore said.
The agency is anticipating there will also be several job opportunities from this.
“There are jobs within the Agency of Natural Resources helping us to stand up and administer these programs,” Moore said. “There will be jobs within the engineering community and helping design different kinds of systems and provide construction oversight.”
There is a timeline for using this funding, which means they have to get all of these dollars committed to projects by the end of 2024.