June 17, 2013

Schumer, Gillibrand Announce Over $5 Million in Federal Investment to Help Improve Water Service to City of Norwich Residents

Massive USDA Investment Will Allow City of Norwich to Construct New Water Treatment Plant in Norwich Through Rural Development Program - Current WTP Is Over Century Old

Today, United States Senators Charles E. Schumer and Kirsten E. Gillibrand announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Rural Development Program will award the City of Norwich with a $5,022,000 Water and Waste Disposal Loan and Grant. Specifically, this $4,022,000 loan and $1,000,000 grant will go towards the construction of a much-needed water treatment plant (WTP) in Norwich, to replace a century-old facility.

In March 2013, Schumer argued in his letter to the USDA that a new WTP is integral to the City and its residents. Schumer highlighted that the city will now be able to replace its aging WTP thanks to this federal funding from the USDA.

"I am pleased to announce that the USDA has heeded my call and will provide this massive investment to the City of Norwich, which will mean a huge boost for the economic development and quality of life in the City as cleaner drinking water flows into the region,” said Senator Schumer. “Moreover, the USDA’s loan and grant will create jobs in the short term for the City of Norwich as it improves the infrastructure necessary for future economic growth. The current water treatment plant in Norwich is over a century old and hampering the City’s ability to attract new businesses. Without this USDA funding, the City of Norwich’s plan to build a new water treatment plant would have been left out to dry.”

“When we invest in key water infrastructure like this, we can deliver clean drinking water to more families in the City of Norwich, and help strengthen the local economy,” Senator Gillibrand said. “Upgrading water infrastructure is an effective way to attract new businesses and support new local jobs. And by making these investments at the federal level, we can help hold the line on property bills to help Norwich families keep more of what they earn.”     

“This is a project we’ve been working on for quite a while. We’re very excited to be able to move forward. We’re extremely appreciative of the help we’ve received from Senator Schumer, Senator Gillibrand and Congressman Hanna,” said City of Norwich Mayor Joseph Maiurano.  Infrastructure is vital not only to the residents of Norwich, but also for the Economic Development of Chenango County.”

Schumer pushed for the funding in a letter to Sec. Vilsack in March, in which he noted that the current WTP in Norwich was constructed in 1904. Furthermore, Schumer pointed out that the plant has not been renovated since 1998. The City’s water filtration system has recently operated under a significantly decreased capacity due to the deteriorating conditions of the plant. Schumer highlighted that the plant significant renovation or replacement in order to meet the residents’ needs for clean water. This $4,022,00 loan and $1,000,000 grant from the USDA will be crucial to meeting the City’s goals for a better quality of life and cleaner water for its residents.

A copy of Senator Schumer’s letter to Secretary Vilsack appears below:

Dear Secretary Vilsack,

I write in support of the City of Norwich’s request for $5,022,000 USDA Rural Development Grant/Loan package for the construction of a new surface water treatment plant (WTP). The WTP is integral to the City. Its replacement is contingent upon the ability to secure the aforementioned funding. Without the Grant/Loan package, the City of Norwich simply cannot undertake the replacement of their outdated surface water treatment plant.

The current WTP was constructed in 1904. The last renovations to the building occurred in 1998. It has recently been operating under a significantly decreased capacity due to the conditions of the plant. In order to return to optimum capability, the plant will need significant renovation, ideally complete replacement. It is easy to see that this USDA Grant/Loan package would greatly assuage concerns to Norwich created by the ailing plant.

I certainly think this allocation of funding would be prudent. This project is the epitome of one which supports the economy and quality of life in rural America. The importance of critical infrastructure that supports a population as considerable as Norwich’s cannot be overstated.

Thank you for your consideration. Please do not hesitate to contact me should you have any questions or need additional information.

Sincerely,

Charles E. Schumer