Gov. Whitmer announces $500M ‘MI Clean Water’ investment to rebuild Michigan’s water infrastructure

‘The work cannot stop here,’ Whitmer said

(Lars Baron/Getty Images)

LANSING, Mich. – A $500 million water infrastructure investment in Michigan’s water systems was announced on Thursday called the MI Clean Water plan.

“The MI Clean Water Plan is a critical part of the solution, but the work cannot stop here. I look forward to working with the legislature to find creative solutions to address our water infrastructure backlog. Everyone must remain committed to ensuring that every Michigander has access to clean water,” Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said.

READ: Groups call on attorney general to stop Nestle from taking Michigan water for huge profit

The MI Clean Water investment aims to provide direct investments for communities to provide safe, clean water to residents. It will support more than 7,500 Michigan jobs, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.

“Access to clean drinking water is a cornerstone of our work at EGLE, and this exciting package of water protections pulls together a wealth of resources to help ensure clean water for all Michiganders,” said EGLE Director Liesl Clark.

MI Clean Water aims to tackle large infrastructure issues that Michigan faces, such as lead-laden water service lines, toxic contamination like Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS), undersized sewers, failing septic systems, unaffordable water rates, and constrained local budgets.

This investment includes a proposal combining federal dollars for lead service line replacement in low-income communities ($102.1 million) with bonding authority for water quality protection ($290 million), one-time General Fund appropriation for drinking water infrastructure and innovation ($105 million), and asset management grants ($2.9 million) to help communities develop, update, and improve their plans for wastewater and stormwater systems resulting in a comprehensive water infrastructure investment of $500 million in Michigan’s water systems.

What’s in the plan?

A $207.1 million investment in drinking water quality, including:

  • Lead Service Line Replacement in Disadvantaged Communities Program - $102 million
  • Lead and Copper – Drinking Water Asset Management Grants - $37.5 million
  • PFAS and Emerging Contaminants - Contamination and Consolidation Grants - $25 million
  • Non-Lead Drinking Water Infrastructure Grants - $35 million
  • Affordability and Planning Grants - $7.5 million

A $293 million investment in wastewater protection, including:

  • Clean Water Infrastructure Grants (eliminating sanitary sewer overflows; correcting combined sewer overflows; increasing green infrastructure) - $235 million
  • Substantial Public Health Risk Grants (removing direct and continuous discharges of raw sewage from surface or ground water) - $20 million
  • Failing Septic System Elimination Program - $35 million
  • Stormwater, Asset Management, and Wastewater Grants - $3 million

READ: More local news coverage

About the Author:

Kayla is a Web Producer for ClickOnDetroit. Before she joined the team in 2018 she worked at WILX in Lansing as a digital producer.