HELENA, Mont. – Governor Steve Bullock today announced that the town of Harlowton has been approved for a $784,000 State Revolving Fund (SRF) loan to modernize drinking water infrastructure. Thanks to the State of Montana’s strong credit rating and Governor Bullock’s decision to reduce SRF interest rates from 3% to 2.5%, Harlowton ratepayers will save $$524,733 over the life of the loan.
“Through strong fiscal management and a bit of common sense, we’re ensuring ratepayers in Harlowton can keep more money in their pockets while making critical infrastructure upgrades. These upgrades will help to support important economic development in the community,” Bullock said of the loan. “We’ll continue to work with local communities to find responsible ways to make critical infrastructure improvements, and save money for Main Street Montana businesses and customers.”
Using the SRF funds, Harlowton will replace an estimated 8,000 feet of cast-iron water mains that are 80 years old and have outlived their useful life.
Harlowton will borrow $392,500.00 from the SRF loan program for 20 years at 2.5 percent interest. The town has also qualified for a second SRF loan worth $392,500.00 which will be forgiven if certain provisions are met.
The changes to the SRF interest rate were made in 2014 as part of Bullock’s Main Street Montana Project. He reduced long-term interest rates from three percent to 2.5 percent. In addition, he reduced the amount of financial reserves communities must hold in order to receive a loan, and reduced the debt-service coverage communities are required to have.
The Main Street Montana Project is building and implementing a business plan for the state of Montana that helps businesses grow, supports job creation, and increases wages. One of the goals of the project is to ensure Montana businesses and communities have efficient and reliable infrastructure.
Battle Ridge Builders, LLC, of Belgrade, Mont., has been awarded the bid for the project, which is expected to be completed in December of this year.
Bullock noted the State Revolving Fund loan program administered by DNRC and the Montana Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) enables Montana communities to upgrade or expand critical drinking- or wastewater treatment facilities at the lowest possible cost.
For more information on the State Revolving Fund program, contact Anna Miller of DNRC at (406) 444-6689, or visit the Montana DNRC Web site at http://dnrc.mt.gov/.