Affordable and sustainable water for Texas – Financial successes from the TWDB December 2015
The goal of providing affordable and sustainable water for Texas drives much of the work at the Texas Water Development Board (TWDB). Our pursuit of this critical mission manifests itself in many ways, but most importantly by providing affordable financing options for water and wastewater projects for Texas communities.
By the end of the state's fiscal year in August 2015, the TWDB had funded more than $19 billion in projects since the agency was established in 1957. The broad spectrum and flexibility of our cost-effective financial assistance programs are among the chief benefits we offer communities. Our programs vary by financing terms, funding needs (planning, design, acquisition, and construction), and by the length of the financial commitment.
We fund both new infrastructure and upgrades to existing infrastructure. Our financial assistance programs have helped large and small communities build critical first-time water and wastewater service, develop new water supplies, respond to drought-related water shortages, address the needs of growing populations, and replace aging infrastructure. The TWDB is engaged in a continuous cycle of helping projects get started and finished and in turning your community's ideas and projects into reality.
The $3.9 billion we committed in July for the inaugural round of funding through the State Water Implementation Fund for Texas (SWIFT) program* will soon be visible around Texas as new water supply projects get underway from Dallas to the Rio Grande Valley and from El Paso to Houston.
While those projects are getting started, others are finishing up or are recently completed. The City of Eden has recently wrapped up its TWDB-funded project to construct a new water well and water treatment plant. The City used approximately $4.7 million in loans and grants from our Economically Distressed Areas Program. TWDB Board Chairman, Bech Bruun, was able to attend the ribbon cutting and see first-hand the new and improved water system.
The Bell County Water Control Improvement District #2 completed a project this year for a new wastewater treatment plant with $1.5 million in financial assistance from the TWDB.
In Matagorda County, the Markham Municipal Utility District (MUD) and the Matagorda County Water Control Improvement District (WCID) #2 both recently completed projects using financial assistance from the TWDB. The Markham MUD upgraded its wastewater system with a $495,000 loan from the TWDB. The WCID improved its water system and increased its water supply with a $500,000 loan.
The City of Alton was able to provide first-time wastewater services to eight subdivisions within the City's service area through a $9.6 million loan from the TWDB.
The list of successful projects funded by the TWDB is constantly growing and changing the landscape of water infrastructure along the way. While we view completed projects as “successes,” the real success is the reliable water supply and dependable wastewater infrastructure we are helping to develop for our great state.
As the year comes to a close, we want to thank you, our readers, for your continued involvement and dedication to securing an affordable and sustainable water supply for Texas. Our successes are your successes and, most importantly, they are the successes that will prepare Texas for whatever future water conditions come our way.
* 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 the SWIRFT.