ALBANY, NY (Erie News Now)-- THIS WEEK GOV. Kathy HOCHUL ANNOUNCEd $479 MILLION IN GRANTS FOR 156 LOCAL CLEAN WATER INFRASTRUCTURE PROJECTS.  

I think this is one of those resources that we take for granted correct, just like air, you don’t think about it. It’s always there. Water is always there and it’s always clean until it’s not and that’s what we’re fighting against,” said Hochul. 

THE FUNDING IS PART OF THE CLEAN WATER, CLEAN AIR, AND GREEN JOBS ENVIRONMENTAL BOND ACT OF 2022, PASSED BY VOTERS LAST YEAR AND TOTALING AT $4.2 billion. 

“That’s all going into that hidden infrastructure that was neglected for many years. Now we realize it’s really the centerpiece of so many communities,” said Basil Seggos, commissioner of the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. 

The cOMMISSIONER SAid THE PROJECTS WILL HELP MANY COMMUNITIES IN NEED OF UPGRADES TO AGING INFRASTRUCTURE.  

THE WATER PROJECTS INTEND TO ADDRESS WATER CONTAMINaNTS, UPGRADING TREATMENT PLANTS, REPLACING TRANSMISSION LINES AND SEPTIC SYSTEMS TO PREVENT WATER POLLUTION.  

“Clean water and safe drinking water is so important for public health, for protecting the environment, for climate resiliency,” said Maureen Coleman, president of Environmental Facilities Corporation. 

COLEMAN ADDed 62 PERCENT OF THE BOND ACT FUNDING AWARDED WILL BE GOING TO DISADVANTAGED COMMUNITIES.  

SOME ENVIRONMENTAL ADVOCATES SAid THESE ARE BIG PROJECTS THAT COULD TAKE YEARS BUT WILL ULTIMATELY HAVE A SIGNIFICANT IMPACT FOR NEW YORKERS.  

“But at the end of the day, New Yorkers are going to see cleaner water because of these investments. They are going to have more assurance that when they turn on the tap, what’s coming out is safe to drink,” said Rob Hayes, director of clean water at Environmental Advocates NY.

THE GOVERNOR ALSO EMPHASIZEd THESE PROJECTS WILL HELP ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT—CREATING THOUSaNDS OF JOBS.