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FY13 Water Infrastructure Funding Picture Comes Into Focus

March 29, 2013
With the enactment of sequestration and final passage of FY 2013 continuing appropriations, which set funding levels through Sept. 30, 2013, we now know the total dollars appropriated for the SRF and RUS programs and have a more complete picture of future water infrastructure funding. The Clean Water SRF received $1.45 billion and the Drinking Water SRF received $908.7 million – a total cut for the SRFs of $27.5 million, or a 1 percent reduction from FY 2012. The RUS Rural Water and Waste Disposal Loan Program, however, was one of the few winners in this year’s appropriations fight. The program received $524.4 million, an increase of $11.4 million, or 2 percent, over FY 2012. However, these are not the true final numbers. Sequestration, the series of stiff cuts to discretionary spending enacted as part of the deal to raise the debt ceiling in 2011, went into effect on March 1. These cuts are applied to the final FY 2013 appropriations numbers and each of the three aforementioned programs received an additional 5 percent reduction. With sequestration taken into account, the Clean Water SRF will receive $1.38 billion, the Drinking Water SRF will receive $863.3 million and the RUS program will receive $498.2 million. This represents a total cut to the SRF programs of $145.5 million (6 percent) and a total cut to the RUS program of $14.8 million (3 percent). Amid these cuts it is important to remember that last Congress, the House Interior/Environment Appropriations Subcommittee approved only $689 million in its FY 2013 bill for the Clean Water SRF (a 53 percent cut from FY 2012) and $829 million for the Drinking Water SRF (a cut of nearly 10 percent as compared to FY 2012). Up until now this remained the only window we had into Congressional intent with regard to the SRF programs. For more information, contact Scott Berry at (703) 837-5321 or berrys@agc.org.
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