Professional Engineers Of North Carolina

SUM 2014

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18 the Professional Engineer Summer 2014 New State Water Infrastructure Authority makes rapid progress T he State Water Infrastructure Authority was created to streamline and unify the state's water-related infrastructure pro- grams. SWIA has gotten of to a fast start since its frst meeting in January and has made rapid progress toward meeting its objectives. NCGS 159G-70 — Session Law 2013-360; budget bill — formed SWIA and created the Division of Water Infrastructure within N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources and consolidated major water infrastructure funding — federal State Revolving Fund (programs, federal CDBG-Infrastruc- ture and the State programs) within one division and one department. Te specifc programs include federal State Drinking Water Revolving Fund program, the federal State Clean Water Revolving Fund program, the federal CDBG-Infrastructure program, which was administered by the N.C. Department of Commerce, and the State loan and grant programs. SWIA's duties, as specifed in NCGS 159G-70, include: 1. After reviewing the recommendations for grants and loans submitted to it by the division, to rank applications and select those that are eligible to receive grants and loans, consistent with federal law. 2. To establish priorities for making loans and grants under this chapter, consistent with federal law. 3. To review the criteria for making loans and grants under G.S. 159G-23 and make recom- mendations, if any, to the department for additional criteria or changes to the criteria, consistent with federal law. 4. To develop guidelines for making loans and grants under this chapter, consistent with federal law. 5. To develop a master plan that meets the state's water infrastructure needs. 6. To assess and make recommendations on the state's role in the development and funding of wastewater, drinking water and stormwater infrastructure in the state. 7. To analyze the adequacy of projected fund- ing to meet projected needs over the next fve years. 8. To make recommendations on ways to maximize the use of current funding resources, whether federal, state or local, and to ensure that funds are used in a coordinated manner. 9. To review the application of management practices in wastewater, drinking water and stormwater utilities and to determine the best practices. 10. To assess the role of public-private partnerships in the future provision of utility service. 11. To assess the application of the river basin approach to utility planning and management. 12. To assess the need for a "troubled system" protocol. SWIA made great progress in its frst three meetings, held in January, February and March. Activities included awarding Clean Water State Revolving Fund projects and Drinking Water State Revolving Fund projects from the fall 2013 applica- tions from local governments; modifying and unifying the application process and scoring criteria for all programs reviewed and approved by SWIA; beginning the review and development process for over half of the duties specifed by the enabling legislation; and developing the authority's organiza- tional structure and operating procedures. Consolidation of applications and scoring Te three federal programs that provide funding has their own unique enabling legislation and some of their own unique requirements. Since diferent state departments and divisions administered the three S W I A B y J D S o l o m o n , P E

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