BWD Receives More Fed Funding


Last updated 3/23/2024 at 11:03am

For the second year in a row, the Borrego Water District and its Legislative Advocates in DC, Ana Schwab and Lowry Crook – Best Best and Krieger LLP, have been successful in receiving a minimum of $3.6 M in Congressionally Direct Spending. The funding will be used to replace aging infrastructure in/around the Deep Well, Club Circle, East/West Star and Santiago Estates developments.

The approved funding level is 80% of the anticipated $4.3 M in total costs. BWD will have the opportunity to appeal for a waiver of the 20% local funding match.

The good news was received when Congress released the FY 24 Appropriations Mini-Bus and it included the Interior-Environment Appropriations Community Project Funding/Congressionally Directed Spending BWDs Water Infrastructure Replacement Project. This project originated in the House (Issa) and was ultimately supported by the whole delegation (Senators Feinstein, Butler, Padilla, and Congressman Issa).

The District’s water distribution system is aging. Various sections/developments were installed in the 1960’s and are starting to reach their life expectancy. The pressure in the system is over 100 psi in many areas which increases the vulnerability of the aging pipelines.

The District’s water distribution system was piecemealed together over time as the District took over smaller Districts in the area. The smaller pipelines were interconnected in partial measures. Each year there are water pipe breaks causing disruption in water service for prolonged periods.

In FY 23, BWD received identical funding for the Sun Gold and Borrego Springs Road Pipeline projects, which is currently under design. BWD is also applying for funding in the upcoming FY 25 for pipelines in the Verbena, Cloudy Moon, Lazy S areas thru Senator Butler’s office. In the past three years, BWD has received approximately $13 M in State Grants and Fed Funding. In addition, BWD is the contracting agency with the State for almost another $5 M in projects being managed by the Watermaster, School, UC Regents and Borrego Valley Stewardship Council for almost $20 M in Basin wide funding. These efforts pay big dividends in avoided costs that most of which would need to be passed on to ratepayers of BWD and Watermaster.