Plumbing Manufacturers International (PMI) commends Congress for coming together to pass the historic, bipartisan infrastructure package, which was signed into law by President Joe Biden Nov. 15.
PMI CEO and Executive Director Kerry Stackpole said PMI welcomes the passage of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA), H.R. 3684, the largest investment in the nation’s infrastructure in decades.
"The act sets in motion critical steps to modernize our nation’s aging infrastructure and includes significant investments in our drinking and wastewater systems,” Stackpole said. “Investing in and modernizing our nation’s infrastructure is critical to the long-term economic growth of the country and will vastly improve access to clean drinking water and improved sanitation.”
The IIJA makes generational investments of more than $550 billion in new spending for priorities such as water infrastructure, roads, highways, bridges, ports, airports, rail, transit, pollution mitigation, as well as for upgrading the energy grid, broadband, cybersecurity and more.
The water infrastructure portion of the package includes more than $50 billion in funding for rural towns and cities, as well as for Native American and underserved communities. PMI advocated for the act's water efficiency, conservation and water reuse funding, as well for significant improvements for water and wastewater systems to be covered by the law, including:
- $48.4 billion over five years for drinking water and wastewater spending;
- $15 billion to support lead service line replacement;
- $200 million in funding to address lead testing and remediation in school and childcare center drinking water systems;
- $48 million for national water reuse programs and $1 billion in funding for western water recycling programs. It also creates a Water Reuse Interagency Working Group;
- $400 million for water efficiency for western states through the Water Smart grant program under the Bureau of Reclamation;
- $10 billion to help drinking water and wastewater systems address emerging contaminants like PFAS and to allow the purchase of certified point-of-entry or point-of-use filters and filtration that will help to remove harmful drinking water contaminants; and
- $3.5 billion for construction of new sanitation facilities for Native American communities, including water, wastewater and solid waste systems.
PMI thanks every lawmaker of the House and Senate who cast a vote for this sweeping infrastructure package.
"We look forward to the implementation of the IIJA, which will support key public works projects for water systems in most need and provide jobs and economic growth at a critical time," Stackpole said. "We congratulate President Biden on his efforts to make Build Back Better and infrastructure renewal the centerpiece of his Administration’s first year in office."