National Driller October 2005 e-Newsletter

The Foundation for Affordable Drinking Water established through the National Ground Water Association has received a $1 million grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to provide 1-percent interest loans to low-income families for water wells and well systems.

The loans -- intended for the installation or improvement of household water wells -- are offered in Alabama, Colorado, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Massachusetts, Maine, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Carolina, New York, Ohio, Texas, Vermont, Washington (state), Wisconsin and West Virginia.

Another important aspect of the loan program is to educate loan recipients on the importance of regular well maintenance and annual testing of their well systems. “Water is essential, and the Foundation is committed to helping those in greatest need,” said Humes, foundation director.

Qualified applicants can receive up to $8,000 at 1-percent interest for a term not to exceed 20 years. To qualify, households must own the home and use it as the principal residence, have as the primary drinking water source an individual household well system located on the property of the home, meet income eligibility requirements and be located in a city, town or unincorporated area with a population of less than 50,000. The Foundation will not underwrite a loan once a project is underway or has been completed. Most new construction projects are not eligible.