Application period for 2018 SWIFT funding cycle opening December 8

For immediate release.  Contact: Kimberly Leggett at 512-463-5129

AUSTIN – (December 7, 2017) – The Texas Water Development Board (TWDB) will open the application period for the 2018 funding cycle of the State Water Implementation Fund for Texas (SWIFT) program* on Friday, December 8. Applications will be due by February 2, 2018.

“The TWDB has committed $5.6 billion in financial assistance to state water plan projects since the inception of the SWIFT program,” said TWDB Chairman Bech Bruun. “These critical projects are developing affordable and sustainable water supplies for our state.”

The Board discussed the proposed SWIFT financing loan structure at today’s Board meeting. Qualifying rural and agricultural projects will continue to receive up to 50 percent subsidies on interest rates. Non-rural entities will be eligible for interest subsidies up to 35 percent depending upon the length of the loan and type of project.

“Texas communities of all sizes with many different needs have received SWIFT funding for a variety of projects,” said TWDB Board member Kathleen Jackson. “In this cycle, we expect other communities to follow their lead by submitting projects that again demonstrate Texas’ ongoing commitment to innovative water supply solutions.”

To be eligible for SWIFT program financial assistance, projects must be recommended in the 2017 State Water Plan.

"The state water plan is the starting point for developing the water projects Texas will need in the future,” said TWDB Board member Peter Lake. “Savings from the SWIFT program are so substantial—$400 million in just 3 years—that communities are incentivized to participate in the planning process and implement projects sooner rather than later.”

The two-page preliminary applications are due February 2, 2018, and may be submitted via the TWDB’s online application or by paper copy. These applications provide information the TWDB needs to complete prioritization of the projects. Projects that receive priority for financial assistance will be invited to submit a complete application, which will include a financial, legal, engineering, and environmental review.

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 50 years to finance approximately $27 billion in water supply projects.

For more details on how to apply for the SWIFT program, please visit the TWDB website.

*The SWIFT program includes two funds, the State Water Implementation Fund for Texas (SWIFT) and the State Water Implementation Revenue Fund for Texas (SWIRFT). Revenue bonds for the program are issued through SWIRFT.

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.