aFederal Funding Option Summaries
EPA Safe Drinking Water Act State Revolving Fund (SRF)
Pros & Cons:
DEP Water Facilities Funding
1997 $44.2 Million federal/$8.8 Million state
1998 $34.7 Million federal/$6.9 Million state
Improvement projects to eliminate primary standard violations; projects to
consolidate non-viable systems; projects that extend service to areas with
known soil or groundwater contamination; projects that benefit disadvantaged
Loans for water system improvements that facilitate compliance with
regulations or significantly further SDWA health protection goals.
Ineligible projects include: those for future population growth; for systems
with significant SDWA noncompliance problems; for maintenance or
State operator certification program; capacity development.
Bill to create additional statutory authority for SRF program (and other
SDWA requirements); DEP rule to administer the program.
Projects must be linked to drinking water specifically.
EPA Clean Water Act State Revolving Fund
DEP Water Facilities Funding
~$100 Million yearly (-$45 Million federal money; ~$ 9 Million state match
(20%, required); >$35 Million loan repayments)
Projects for: eliminating public health hazards; eliminating outlawed
discharges; achieving compliance (toxics, sludge management, REUSE,
nutrient reduction); REUSE or sludge management not required to meet
compliance requirements; others.
Loans for wastewater infrastructure: collection, transmission, treatment,
disposal and REUSE facilities. No grants given; no set-asides.
Reuse projects are of mid-high priority if being implemented to meet
compliance requirements; otherwise, relatively low priority.
Relatively stringent "readiness to proceed" evaluation of proposed projects
(project must be planned and designed per fairly rigorous (mostly) federal
requirements); several financial tests.
Pros & Cons:
HUD Community Development Block Grants (CDBG)
Administered by: DCA
Recipients: Non-entitlement cities (no urban entitlement programs) with population
<50,000; non-entitlement counties with population <200,000.
Available: Maximum grant amount based on population
1,250 3,999 $600,000
4,000- 10,549 $700,000
Uses: Neighborhood and Commercial Revitalization CDBG: water lines, new-
potable; water line replacement; water tank/well/treatment plant; water
Economic Development CDBG: water lines, tanks, treatment, wells, and
"other" (specified by applicant).
Principles: Grants to benefit low and moderate income persons, to prevent or eliminate
slums or blight.
Requirements: 51% of beneficiaries in the community must have low to moderate income
(<=80% of area's median income); public participation required (Citizens'
Advisory Task Force); other requirements specific to grant type.
Process is very competitive.
Pros & Cons:
USDA Rural Utilities Service (RUS) Water and Waste Disposal Programs
Loans and Grants
Administered by USDA Rural Development Field Office, Gainesville
(Previously administered by the Rural Development Administration and the
Farmers Home Administration)
Rural areas, municipalities, counties, special-purpose districts, Indian tribes,
National Funding Florida's Allocation Average Size
Loan (direct or guaranteed)
Loans (direct and guaranteed) to restore deteriorating water supply, or
improve, enlarge or modify a water facility or inadequate waste facility.
Grants to reduce water and waste disposal costs to a reasonable level for
users of the system (grants up to 75% of eligible project costs).
Grants also available for technical assistance and training (identification and
evaluation of solutions to water and waste problems), solid waste management
(technical assistance to reduce or eliminate pollution of water resources), and
rural water circuit rider technical assistance (help to assure cost-effective
operation of rural water systems).
To improve the quality of life and promote economic development in rural
Loans/grants to areas with population <10,000. Priority to public entities in
areas of <5,500 people. Preference to projects for merging small facilities and
those serving low income communities.
Applications must include information on engineering feasibility, economic
soundness, cost estimates, and organization, financing and management
Pros & Cons:
Water Desalination Act of 1996
Type: Grants; contracts
Administered by: Department of the Interior
Recipients: Institutions of higher learning, public utilities, State and local governmental
agencies, other entities.
Available: $ 5,000,000 authorized for fiscal 1997 2002 for Section 3 activities
$25,000,000 authorized for fiscal 1997 2002 for Section 4 activities
(must also be appropriated)
Uses: Sec. 3 Research and Studies topics include: investigating desalination
processes; ascertaining the optimum mix of investment and operating costs;
investigating methods of increasing economic efficiency of desalination
through dual-purpose co-facilities; studying methods for the recovery of
byproducts; salinity modeling and toxicity analysis of brine discharges; cost
reduction strategies for facility construction and operation.
Sec. 4 Desalination Demonstration and Development program projects
include: Plants and Modules (technical work including design, construction,
and testing of plants and modules to develop desalination processes and
concepts); Byproducts (study methods for marketing of byproducts to offset
the costs of treatment); Economic surveys (conduct economic studies to
determine present and prospective costs of desalination compared to other
methods of producing water for beneficial purposes).
Principles: Authorization of research and studies to determine the most cost-effective and
technologically efficient means by which usable water can be produced from
saline water or water otherwise impaired or contaminated (reuse).
Constraints: The Federal share of the cost of a research, study or demonstration project
carried out under the Act shall not exceed 50% of the total cost. A Federal
contribution in excess of 25% may not be made unless the DOI determines the
project is not feasible without such increase.
Requirements: Not yet specified. Application process not yet established.
Competition for funds likely to be intense.
Pros & Cons:
Water Management District Background Paper
Use of SORIP-2000 Funds for Water Supply Development Projects
December 17, 19996
LAND ACQUISITION FUNDS
In 1980, the Florida Legislature amended Chapter 373 of the Florida Statutes to create the Save Our
Rivers Land Acquisition program using funds from the State's Documentary Tax Stamp Revenue. These
funds, called the Water Management Land Trust Fund (WMLTF), administered by Department of
Environmental Regulation (now the Department of Environmental Protection) were to be used [to acquire
land interest] in lands necessary for "water management, water supply, and the conservation and
protection of water resources except that such monies shall not be used for acquisition of rights-of-
way for canals or pipelines." Later, the program was amended to allow a portion of the revenue (25%
as of 1995) to be used for "management, maintenance, and capital improvements" of lands acquired by
In 1990, the Legislature created the P-2000 Trust Fund. A portion of this fund (30%) is dedicated to the
water management districts "for the purchase of water management lands, pursuant to Chapter 373.59"
which is the Save Our Rivers program authorization and criteria. The P-2000 program requires that, in
addition to meeting the requirements of the Save Our Rivers program, expenditures of the P-2000 funds
must also meet at least one of six criteria. Four of these criteria deal with issues of imminent loss of an
acquisition opportunity or an opportunity for a bargain sale. The fifth deals with protecting habitat for
endangered species. The sixth criteria relates to whether land in the project serves to "protect or
The original 1980 Save Our Rivers legislation certainly contemplated that this program could and should
acquire lands critical to regional water supply projects. It is also evident, however, that this role should
be performed in an environmentally sensitive manner by protecting, enhancing, or restoring naturally
functioning water related habitats (rivers, lakes, swamps, marshes, and groundwater recharge areas). The
land purchase should meet all three objectives: 1) water management, 2) water supply, and 3)
conservation of natural resources. The P-2000 program continues this idea with even more emphasis on
protection of groundwater resources.
PROJECT DEVELOPMENT FUNDS
With respect to WMLTF or P-2000 funds being used to develop water supply projects beyond the
acquisition of land interests, several factors in the legislation are pertinent. As stated above, The Save
Our Rivers legislation specifically prohibits the use of WMLTF money for the acquisition of canal rights-
of-way and pipelines. WMLTF monies may be used for construction of restoration projects consistent
with the Save Our Rivers management guidelines (restore the land to its natural state and condition). To
the extent that such enhancement or restoration improves water supply potential, these funds would aid
in the development of water supply projects.
P-2000 funds, however, are tax-free bond revenues which are subject to federal restrictions regarding
their use beyond capital investment, i.e., land acquisition. It is (probably) not possible to utilize any of
these funds for water supply project development beyond land acquisition activities.
CASE EXAMPLES USE OF P-2000/WMLTF TO SUPPORT WATER SUPPLY
Northwest Florida Water Management District
* Acquired 7,000 acres of the watershed of the Econofina Creek which is the principle source of
water for Deer Point Park Reservoir; the water supply for Panama City.
Southwest Florida Water Management District
* Acquired lands in Pasco, DeSoto, and Hillsborough Counties to protect and support municipal
wellfields and water supplies. These lands also meet criteria associated with the conservation and
protection of natural resources.
South Florida Water Management District
* Wellfield recharge areas were acquired in Lee (CREW project) and Martin (Savannas project)
Counties. Along with being conservation areas, these areas are within the recharge area of
municipal wellfields for these two counties. These acquisitions help protect the quantity and
quality of water available to these wellfields.
* Save Our Rivers and P-2000 funds have been used to perfect title to lands within the Water
Conservation Areas in Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach Counties. These areas are both natural
resource conservation areas and water supply storage areas for maintaining safe groundwater
levels along the east coast of Florida during rainfall deficient periods.
* The East Coast Buffer project also located in Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach Counties has and
will continue to use P-2000 funds to expand the capabilities of the Water Conservation Areas to
protect and provide adequate water supplies. The objectives of what will be a highly managed
system of marshes, reservoirs, and recharge areas are to increase aquifer recharge as well as
surface and subsurface storage of water to enhance regional water supplies and to protect urban
drinking water wellfields.
Private Investment Funds
Pros and Cons
Investor-Owned Utilities and others
government and investor-owned utilities
based on needs and rate of return on investment
water supply development
water treatment and distribution facilities
fair return on investment
Public Service Commission regulations
1) Enact legislation to exempt from PSC regulation bulk
sale of water supplies by investor-owned utilities
2) Revise PSC practices to ensure that utilities obtain
cost recovery from existing customers for all facilities
deemed necessary by environmental agencies.
Removing these impediments provides significant untapped
prepared by Carlyn H. Kowalsky
December 13, 1996
e Chapter 298 Water Control Districts
1. Sources of Funds
Chapter 298 authorizes three sources of funds available to the District:
a. Non-ad valorem assessments against all benefitted lands within a
district to be utilized for the purpose of installing water control
(flood protection/water supply) works. 298.36, F.S.
b. Non-ad valorem assessments levied against all benefitted
properties for the purpose of maintaining and operating the works
and facilities of the districts. 298.54, F.S.
c. Fees and charges may be collected for the connection to the
works of the district. 298.22, F.S.
d. Chapter 298 water control districts may also be given the
authority by special act to levy ad valorem taxes. There is no
millage limit. But the millage must be preceded by referendum
approval of electors of the District.
e. Districts are administered by the governing boards of the
independent districts. There are currently 84 districts within the
state of Florida comprising between 2Y1 and 3 million acres of
Water control districts provide flood control and water supply for both
urban and agricultural areas. There is no impediment to a water control
district serving in either environment or a mixed environment.
The amount available is open ended. Some districts have budgets of 10
to 12 million dollars or more annually. Others have only a few thousand
dollars. The amount that is available to an independent district depends
upon the works that will be constructed and the benefit to the
Water control districts historically serve primarily to provide flood
protection. Today their uses are principally flood protection, water
supply and occasionally water quality protection.
5. Guiding Principles
Comprehensive water management and control. It should be noted that
the development of water control district facilities must comply with
state water policy, must receive appropriate permits (both ERP and water
supply) and be consistent with the applicable local government
6. Requirements for Funding
There are no fundamental prerequisites for the formation of a water
control district other than a need for flood control and water supply
Resistance by any population or landowner to additional taxes.
8. Actions to Implement
a. Special act of the legislature must be passed creating the district.
b. A governing board must be elected and development and
implement a plan of water control for the area comprising the
c. Once the plan is adopted, non-ad valorem assessment (or
conceivably ad valorem taxes) can be levied to implement a
9. Pros and Cons (Comments)
a. Possibly coordination with other local government can be a
b. More likely, resistance by local populace to the installation of the
taxing authority will be the greatest impediment to
c. On the positive side, a water management project of almost any
type can be developed and funded using this mechanism.