Negaunee, Sawyer awarded water grants

MARQUETTE — Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Tuesday awarded more than $14 million in grants under the umbrella of the MI Clean Water plan to help 28 Michigan cities, villages and townships better ensure safe, clean tap water for residents.

Recipients include the city of Negaunee, which was awarded a Drinking Water Asset Management grant for $466,171, and K.I. Sawyer, which was awarded a DWAM grant for $369,800.

“By making critical investments in our water infrastructure, we can create thousands of good-paying jobs and protect access to safe drinking water and drive down costs for families and communities,” Whitmer said in a news release. “The MI Clean Water plan is a game-changer for Michigan and we should continue building on it to replace all lead service lines statewide, tackle toxic contaminants and lower utility bills for families.”

The grants, issued through the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy, support work including replacing lead service lines, enhancing water affordability plans and connecting homes with contaminated drinking water wells to safe community water supplies.

“The old saying ‘An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure’ is no more evident than in the aging water systems in communities across Michigan,” EGLE Director Liesl Clark said in a news release. “Today’s investment will help ensure that these towns and cities maintain safe, reliable water for Michigan residents into the future.”

The MI Clean Water plan is a $500 million investment announced by Whitmer in 2020 to rebuild the state’s water infrastructure to help provide clean, affordable water to Michiganders through investments in communities.

It addresses water infrastructure issues that Michigan faces such as lead-laden water service lines, toxic contamination like per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, undersized sewers, failing septic systems, unaffordable water rates and constrained local budgets.

The Drinking Water Asset Management grant is available to assist water supplies in asset management plan development or updates, and/or distribution system materials inventory as defined in Michigan’s Lead and Copper Rule.


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