U.S. Senators Charles E. Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand today announced $1,485,000 in U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development Grant funding for two Genesee County water projects. The Town of Oakfield will use its $750,000 in federal funds to construct a new water district. The Town of Oakfield’s water system serves more than 150 residents and one commercial user. All of these users currently rely on private wells, many of which are drying up and contain contaminants. This new town water system will improve sanitary conditions and provide significant infrastructure improvements for the town’s municipal water supply. The Town of Oakfield has also been provided a federal loan through the USDA for $1,673,000; it will have 38 years to pay this loan off at a low percentage. This low-interest loan, in combination with the Rural Development grant, will make this $2,423,000 project a reality. The Town of Byron will use its $735,000 in federal funds to run approximately 19,700 linear feet of water main, valves, and hydrants to 50 residential properties. These residents are being incorporated into the municipal water system because the private wells they currently rely on are also contaminated. The Town of Byron has also been provided a federal loan through the USDA for $412,000; it will also have 38 years to pay this loan off at a low percentage. This low-interest loan, in combination with the Rural Development grant, will make its $1,147,000 project a reality.
“With this funding and these low-interest loans, the Towns of Oakfield and Byron in Genesee County will now be able to make crucial improvements to their water districts without passing the entire financial burden onto local taxpayers,” said Senator Schumer. “Both of these projects will provide the two towns with wise infrastructure investments that will enhance public health and economic development.”
“This is a much needed investment for the Town of Oakfield and the Town of Byron,” said Senator Gillibrand, first New York Senator to serve on the Senate Agriculture Committee in nearly 40 years. “Upgrading water infrastructure is an effective way to support local businesses and attract new jobs to Genesee County. This critical funding will help enhance resident’s quality of life by delivering clean drinking water to more local families.”
“This USDA grant has made it possible for almost 150 residents in Water District IV to receive municipal water. These residents have been dealing with wells that are drying up and have water contamination,” said Carol Glor, Town of Oakfield Supervisor. “The grant award will make this project much more affordable by lowering the annual debt service by approximately $400.00 a year. The Town of Oakfield is extremely grateful to USDA for helping to fund this project and making our community a better place to live.”
“This funding will be used to install water mains along homes on Swamp Road in Water District 6,” said Peter Yasses, Town of Byron Supervisor. “I cannot thank our representatives enough for their help with this funding, which will greatly benefit the Byron community.”
USDA Rural Development’s Water and Environmental Program provides loans and grants to ensure that the necessary investments are made in water and wastewater infrastructure to deliver safe drinking water and protect the environment in rural areas.