Deluzio, Vice President Harris Celebrate $200 Million Investment to Remove Lead Pipes, Protect Public Health in Pennsylvania

FILE – In this June 27, 2019, file photo, then-Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., listens to questions after the Democratic primary debate hosted by NBC News at the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Art in Miami. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson, File)

CARNEGIE, PA — Congressman Chris Deluzio (PA-17) welcomed Vice President Kamala Harris and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Michael Regan to Western Pennsylvania today. Together and alongside other elected leaders, they announced Pennsylvania will receive a $200 million investment from President Biden’s Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) to improve its water infrastructure and replace dangerous lead pipes in communities.

This Pennsylvania announcement is part of a nationwide $5.8 billion IIJA investment in stormwater, drinking water, and wastewater investments that will help support essential water infrastructure that protects public health and water bodies across the country. Almost half of this funding will be available as grants or principal forgiveness loans, which help underserved communities across America invest in water infrastructure.

“Exposure to any level of lead puts everyone, especially kids, at risk,” said Rep. Deluzio. “I am so glad I can help deliver millions from President Biden’s Infrastructure Law funding for communities in Western Pennsylvania like Millvale to remove dangerous lead pipes and ensure folks have clean and safe drinking water.”

“President Biden and I believe that every person in our country should have a right to clean water no matter where they live or how much money they make. That is why our Administration made clean water a national priority and delivered the largest investment in America’s water infrastructure in history,” said Vice President Harris. “Today, I am proud to announce more than $5.8 billion from our Investing in America agenda for states, Tribes, and territories to upgrade water infrastructure in communities across our nation. With this investment, we are continuing our urgent work to remove every lead pipe in the country and ensure that every American has access to safe and reliable drinking water.”

“President Biden’s Investing in America agenda continues to transform communities for the better with this latest infusion of funds for critical water infrastructure projects,” said EPA Administrator Michael S. Regan. “With $50 billion in total, the largest investment in water infrastructure in our nation’s history, EPA will enable communities across the nation to ensure safer drinking water for their residents and rebuild vital clean water infrastructure to protect public health for decades to come.”

In the greater Pittsburgh area, water utilities are working hard to remove lead service lines from operation and reduce exposure to lead from drinking water. The Wilkinsburg-Penn Joint Water Authority used State Revolving Fund dollars’ worth over $9.5 million to replace approximately 1000 lead service lines in low-income residential neighborhoods.

The funding EPA announced for Pennsylvania is part of a $5.8 billion investment through the Clean Water and Drinking Water State Revolving Funds (SRF), one of EPA’s signature water investment programs. This multi-billion-dollar investment will fund state-run, low-interest loan programs to address key challenges, with $2.6 billion going to the Clean Water SRF for wastewater and stormwater infrastructure and $3.2 billion going to the Drinking Water SRF for drinking water infrastructure. Today’s announcement includes allotments for Bipartisan Infrastructure Law General Supplemental funds and Emerging Contaminant funds for SRF programs for fiscal year 2024. EPA anticipates announcing allocations for billions in additional resources in fiscal year 2024 for the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law Lead Service Line Replacement fund later this Spring.

Since 2022, the IIJA has injected $21.9 billion into water infrastructure projects across the country protecting public health, preserving water resources, and creating jobs. These investments are unprecedented and transformational. As part of today’s announcement, EPA released for the first time an initial list of 124 Bipartisan Infrastructure Law-funded SRF projects that are underway across the country. A full list of the projects can be viewed on EPA’s website. View more stories about how Bipartisan Infrastructure Law has impacted communities across the country by accessing the Investing in America’s Water Infrastructure Storymap.

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