Michigan LCV: FundMIWater Infrastructure Plan
In March, 2021, President Biden signed into law the American Rescue Plan (ARP), a $1.9 trillion economic stimulus to reinvest in our communities and rebuild our economy after the Covid-19 Pandemic. In November, President Biden signed the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA), another $1.3 trillion economic package to invest in our nation’s infrastructure, including roads, bridges, and water. Thanks to these bills, Michigan has a historic budget surplus that can be used to shape the future of our state’s economy, natural resources, and public health and wellbeing.
In early December, the Michigan Senate unanimously passed Senate Bill 565, which will invest $3.3 billion of available ARP and IIJA funds into Michigan’s water and water infrastructure, marking a big step in the right direction to protect our water and communities.
Senate Bill 565 will help address decades of lack of investment in our water systems, protect and provide clean, safe drinking water, rebuild our aging waste and stormwater infrastructure, and address toxic contamination. The bill includes:
- $1 billion in lead service line replacement
- $435 million for wastewater upgrades across the state, including funds for green infrastructure, failing septic tank replacement, and storm/sewer drain separation projects.
- $400 million for the Great Lakes Water Authority for drinking water, sewer, and stormwater upgrades in the city of Detroit and its metro area.
- $400 million for drinking water upgrades in water treatment plants and along community water service lines.
- $100 million for PFAS contaminated site clean up
While SB 565 is a great first step to address our Michigan’s water needs, we must continue to push lawmakers to grow SB 565’s total investment by $1B to include:
- $500 million for additional stormwater infrastructure to prepare communities for increased precipitation and flooding caused by climate change. Additional stormwater infrastructure must also prioritize climate resiliency first, ensuring that installed infrastructure is green infrastructure (rain gardens, bioswales, green roofs, etc.) as opposed to traditional, gray pipes.
- $500 million over the next 5 years to provide water assistance in the short term and initiate a long-term process to achieve water affordability. Michiganders across the state struggle with water affordability, especially in urban centers like Flint and Detroit, where roughly 10% of residents spend more than a quarter of their income on water services.