New Money Approved for Water Quality Projects

Iowa Watershed Improvement Review Board approves $2.1 million in grants for seven projects in Iowa.

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey announced last week that the state Watershed Improvement Review Board has approved seven applications totaling $2.1 million grants to support projects that will improve water quality in Iowa. The approved projects have already completed watershed assessments that identified critical water resource areas and will focus on implementing specific water quality improvements.

"Improving and protecting water quality is critical to what we do at the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship," says Northey. "These projects will address issues like runoff and drainage, streambank erosion, municipal discharge and a number of other problems that can impact water quality in these eight counties."

The seven grant recipients will provide $1.7 million to match the $2.1 million investment by the state. As a result, these awards will mean a total of $3.8 million will be invested in water-quality improvement projects. Individual awards ranged from $64,260 to $500,000. The projects will start after a grant agreement is signed between the applicant and the Watershed Improvement Review Board.

Soil and water conservation districts, public water supply utilities, county conservation boards, cities and local watershed improvement committees were eligible to apply. Individual projects could request up to $500,000.

The Board is comprised of representatives from agriculture, drinking water and wastewater utilities, environmental organizations, agribusiness, and the conservation community along with two state senators and two state representatives. For more information or to ask questions, contact Jerry Neppel at 515-281-3599.

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