EPA Finalizes Fees on Infrastructure Finance Program

On June 28, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced the final rule related to the fee structure for applications to the Water Infrastructure Finance Innovation Act (WIFIA) loan program. WIFIA, authorized under the Water Resources Reform Development Act of 2014,  authorizes EPA to provide secured (direct) loans and loan guarantees to eligible water infrastructure projects. The program received $17 million for loans in the continuing resolution passed late in 2016, and an additional $8 million for loans in the omnibus spending package enacted in May of this year.

EPA will require a non-refundable application fee for each project that is invited to submit an application for credit assistance under WIFIA. Before being invited to apply, interested applicants must submit a letter of interest. The application fee will be due upon submission of the application. For fiscal year 2017, the application fee is $25,000 for applications for projects serving small communities (population of not more than 25,000 people). For all other project applications, the application fee is $100,000. The Water Infrastructure Improvements for the Nation Act of 2016,  passed in December of last year, amended WIFIA to allow, at the request of an applicant, the financing of fees as part of the loan. While not reflected in this rule, the ability to finance fees as part of a WIFIA loan is an option available to applicants.

You may read more from the Federal Registry entry here, and learn more about the WIFIA program at the EPA website.