Drinking Water State Revolving Fund (DWSRF): Program Overview and Issues [Updated October 24, 2008]   [open pdf - 72KB]

This CRS report is an overview of the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund (DWSRF)."The Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) Amendments of 1996 authorized a drinking water state revolving loan fund (DWSRF) program to help public water systems finance infrastructure projects needed to comply with federal drinking water regulations and to protect public health. Under the program, states receive capitalization grants to make loans to water systems for drinking water projects and certain other SDWA activities. Since FY1997, Congress has provided more than $10.3 billion for this program, including $829 million for FY2008. As of June 2007, the DWSRF program had provided a total of $12.6 billion in assistance and supported 5,346 projects. The Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA's) latest (2003) survey of capital improvement needs for public water systems found that water systems need to invest $276.8 billion on infrastructure improvements over 20 years to ensure the provision of safe water. This amount represents a 60% increase over the 1999 survey estimate of $165.5 billion (in 2003 dollars) and reflects funds needed for compliance with several revised regulations (e.g., the arsenic and radium rules), security-related needs, and better reporting of needs for infrastructure rehabilitation and replacement. Key issues include the gap between estimated needs and funding, SDWA compliance costs, and the need for cities to update and maintain water infrastructure, apart from SDWA compliance."

Report Number:
CRS Report for Congress, RS22037
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