The Yates County Soil and Water Conservation District has been granted funding to construct a salt storage facility in the town of Starkey. The facility will cover an exposed salt pile, providing a safeguard against environmental pollution and improving water quality in the area. The grant is part of the State’s Water Quality Improvement Project (WQIP) and Non-Agricultural Nonpoint Source Planning and Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System Mapping Grant (NPG) programs, which provide financial support for water quality improvement projects, protecting drinking water sources and aquatic habitat, and improving aging water infrastructure.
Governor Kathy Hochul announced that more than $110 million in grants had been administered by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC), with over $90 million of the funding being directed towards water quality improvements in Environmental Justice communities that have been disproportionately affected by environmental pollution. The grants will support 51 WQIP projects and 35 NPG projects statewide, with approximately $45 million allocated to projects in watersheds that have experienced harmful algal blooms (HABs) in the past five years.
“The grants announced today will help communities across the state safeguard our drinking water so families know they have access to something that’s not a privilege, but a human right,” said DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos.
The WQIP program funds projects that improve water quality, aquatic habitat, or protect drinking water sources. The NPG program funds projects that reduce polluted stormwater runoff and improve resiliency against climate impacts. Both programs are supported by the State’s Environmental Protection Fund (EPF) and Clean Water Infrastructure Improvement Act funding.
Governor Hochul’s 2023-24 Executive Budget sustains the EPF at a historic $400 million, providing funding for critical environmental programs such as land acquisition, farmland protection, invasive species prevention and eradication, enhanced recreational access, water quality improvement, and an aggressive environmental justice agenda. The grant funding is part of the State’s ongoing commitment to upgrade New York’s aging infrastructure, improve water security, and ensure all New Yorkers have access to clean water for generations to come.
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