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Illinois EPA Announces $4 Million in Funding to the City of Rockford to Replace Lead Service Lines

SPRINGFIELD, ILLINOIS, June 9 - Illinois EPA Director John J. Kim today announced $4 million in funding to the City of Rockford (Winnebago County) to replace lead service lines in the community water supply. The funding is provided through a low-interest loan from the Illinois EPA's State Revolving Fund, which provides funding for drinking water, wastewater, and stormwater projects. The City of Rockford will receive 100 percent principal forgiveness for the loan.

"As all Illinois community water supplies work toward completing lead service line material inventories, the Illinois EPA continues to provide funding to address lead service line replacements through our State Revolving Fund program," said Director Kim. "We anticipate an increase in lead service line replacement projects in the coming fiscal years and remain committed to working with communities as they proceed with removing the threat of lead in drinking water."

"With this funding we will remain at the forefront of addressing lead in our community and continue our commitment to providing safe drinking water for Rockford residents," said Tom McNamara, Mayor of Rockford

The City of Rockford will replace approximately 960 lead service lines within the distribution system. Service lines are small pipes that carry drinking water from the water mains into homes. Many older homes still have lead service lines. Household plumbing fixtures and faucets made prior to 1986 may also contain lead. Lead can enter drinking water when corrosion of pipes and/or fixtures occurs. Lead is a toxic metal that can accumulate in the body over time. Eliminating lead services lines will reduce exposure to residents living in homes currently utilizing lead service lines.

The Illinois EPA provides Lead Service Line Replacement (LSLR) Principal Forgiveness for projects directly related to activities that reduce or eliminate lead from potable water. Illinois EPA has made more than $107 million in funding available in the form of principal forgiveness to complete LSLR activity in fiscal years 2021 - 2023, until the allotted funds are expended. As of June 7, 2022, $47,083,858.96 of the funds have been committed to LSLR projects in Illinois, with several additional projects in the pipeline. LSLR principal forgiveness is available up to a maximum amount of $4 million per fiscal year for 2022 and 2023 for any one loan recipient.