EPA gives $2M to UNC for small water-system aid

Jun. 18, 2014 @ 05:01 PM

Water systems that serve fewer than 10,000 customers stand to benefit from a $2 million grant awarded to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
The grant, from the federal Environmental Protection Agency, goes to the Environmental Finance Center in UNC’s School of Government. It’s meant to assist small water systems run by local or tribal governments, mobile home park owners, homeowners associations, shopping mall operators and hotel managers.
The finance center is expected to lead a team that includes the Environmental Finance Center Network and the American Water Works Association to coach those who run the water systems to improve their technical, managerial and financial savvy.
The grant should allow the team to serve systems in all 50 states and all U.S. territories for 18 months, according to UNC officials. It’ll be used to develop classroom training, workshops, group and one-on-one assistance, webcasts and online tools and resources.
“Small water systems comprise more than 94 percent of the nation’s 157,000 public water systems and struggle much more to meet clean drinking water standards than their larger counterparts,” said Glenn Barnes, the finance center’s senior project director, in a prepared statement.

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