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Small Community Wastewater Grant Program

Financial Assistance Programs – Grants and Loans

Small Community Wastewater Grant Program

The Small Community Wastewater Grant (SCWG) Program was most recently funded in 2002 (by Propositions 40 and 50), and it provided grants to small (i.e., with a population of 20,000 persons, or less) disadvantaged (i.e., annual median household income [MHI] is 80 percent or less of the statewide MHI) communities for planning, design, and construction of publicly-owned wastewater treatment and collection facilities.

All available SCWG funds were committed to projects several years ago; however, some of the funds previously committed to projects have gone unused for various reasons. These "residual bond funds" have been disencumbered, and can be used to fund new projects.

On February 19, 2013, the State Water Board approved a streamlined process, allowing the residual bond funds to be directed to projects applying for funding through the Clean Water State Revolving Fund (CWSRF) Program. Available residual bond funds will supplement CWSRF Category 1 principal forgiveness/grants.

Program History

The SCWG Program Guidelines (Guidelines) were adopted by the State Water Resources Control Board (State Water Board) on June 17, 2004, and amended on May 22, 2007. The 2007 Statewide Competitive Project List was adopted by the State Water Board on September 4, 2007.

Related Funding Programs

The State Water Board’s Clean Water State Revolving Fund Program, which is funded by federal grants, State funds, and revenue bonds, provides low-interest financing for construction of publicly-owned wastewater treatment facilities, local sewers, sewer interceptors, and water recycling facilities, as well as, expanded use projects. Small, disadvantaged communities with substantial water quality investment (user rates at least 1.5 percent of the community MHI) may be eligible to receive CWSRF Program principal forgiveness/grants for wastewater projects.

If you would like more information regarding funding opportunities for small community drinking water projects, please refer to the California Department of Public Health’s (CDPH’s) Website. CDPH provides funding (grants for disadvantaged communities, as well as low-interest financing) to public water systems through the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund (DWSRF). The CDPH has a technical assistance program for small communities with a population of 10,000 persons or less.

On March 1, 2014, Governor Brown approved a $687.4-million emergency drought relief package to take effect immediately. As a result of the Governor’s action, the State Water Board approved $4 million in funding from the Cleanup and Abatement Account to provide interim replacement drinking water for economically disadvantaged communities with contaminated water supplies.

Receive Program Updates

You may want to access the Small Community Wastewater Strategy webpage for updates relating to the State Water Board’s ongoing efforts to assist small and/or disadvantaged communities with their wastewater needs.

envelope Subscribe online to receive information and updates. Please check the Small Communities Program.

Questions or comments about the SCWG Program?

Meghan Tosney
Senior Water Resource Control Engineer
Division of Financial Assistance
Small Community Wastewater Unit
(916) 341-5729