SWIFT Savings Announced
For immediate release. Contact: Sarah Haney at 512-463-5129
AUSTIN – (October 13, 2015) – The Texas Water Development Board (TWDB) today announced the projected savings for Texas communities participating in the first round of the State Water Implementation Fund for Texas (SWIFT) program.
The total amount of financial assistance for SWIFT projects in 2015 is approximately $900 million. The TWDB estimates the 20 project sponsors will save more than $106 million for the 30 projects approved earlier this summer by the TWDB. The total savings may be even more for communities whose credit ratings are lower than the AAA rating for the SWIFT program.
"The success of the first round of SWIFT financial assistance can be measured in many ways—the number of applications, the diversity and scope of projects, and the number of Texans who will benefit from the new water supply projects," said TWDB Board Chairman Bech Bruun. "But one of the most important measures is how much money SWIFT is saving the state. When utilities save money, they can pass those savings on to their rate payers."
In its meeting today, the Board also established the lending rate scales for the first round of SWIFT projects. The rate structures were set as a result of last week's bond transaction on Wall Street.
"The first round of SWIFT has demonstrated Texas' readiness to execute its vision of ensuring the state has the water it needs for the future," said TWDB Board member Kathleen Jackson. "There's much more to be done, and we encourage communities to apply for the next round of SWIFT."
The application period for the next round of SWIFT will open December 1 and close February 5, 2016. To be eligible for the upcoming round of SWIFT, projects must be included in the adopted 2016 Regional Water Plans and the subsequent 2017 State Water Plan.
SWIFT was established by the Texas Legislature and voters in 2013 to fund projects in the state water plan. SWIFT was created through the transfer of a one-time, $2 billion appropriation from the state's Rainy Day Fund. The $2 billion will be leveraged with revenue bonds over the next 50 years to finance approximately $27 billion in water supply projects. More information on the SWIFT program is available on our website.
The TWDB is the state agency charged with collecting and disseminating water-related data, assisting with regional planning, and preparing the state water plan for the development of the state’s water resources. The TWDB administers cost-effective financial assistance programs for the construction of water supply, wastewater treatment, flood control, and agricultural water conservation projects.