Following her specific push to make investments in rural water projects across North Dakota, U.S. Senator Heidi Heitkamp announced $10.3 million in federal funding to help expand and improve water supply infrastructure in rural communities throughout the state.
Heitkamp, Ranking Member of the Senate Agriculture Committee Subcommittee on Jobs, Rural Economic Growth and Energy Innovation, has consistently advocated for federal investments to upgrade the state’s water infrastructure, particularly in rural areas. Yesterday, Heitkamp met with Deputy Secretary of the Interior Mike Connor to discuss the need for such investments in North Dakota, as well as ways to streamline the federal permit approving process in Indian Country.
The U.S. Department of the Interior Bureau of Reclamation approved an additional $10.3 million to construct and upgrade water supply projects on the Standing Rock, Spirit Lake, and Turtle Mountain Indian Reservations. Funds will also be used for the Southwest Pipeline project and additional priorities as determined by the state.
“With so many North Dakotans living in rural areas, we have to do everything we can to make sure all our state’s residents have access to reliable and clean water,” said Heitkamp. “Having grown up in a small, rural town in southeast North Dakota, I understand the importance of building a strong water supply infrastructure and every day in the Senate, I’m pushing for investments and ways to improve the lives of folks living in rural America. These funds will make a substantial impact in small towns and communities throughout North Dakota – including in Indian Country – that have dealt with the challenges of insufficient infrastructure for far too long. Partnering with officials on the federal and state levels, I’ll continue to be a vocal advocate for rural America and work to make sure all our families get the resources they need – no matter where they live.”
As a strong advocate for improving domestic infrastructure, Heitkamp has fought for federal support for water systems improvements across the state.