Apr. 8—Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Friday that $15 million in funding is available through the State Septic System Replacement Program to support homeowners.
The grants are the second round from a total of $75 million provided to improve water quality and protect public health through the targeted replacement of aging and sub-standard septic systems and removal of cesspools in communities statewide, according to a media release. The program is a collaboration between the Department of Environmental Conservation, Department of Health, Environmental Facilities Corporation, and participating counties to administer funding to qualifying homeowners.
The Septic Replacement Program improves water quality by encouraging and incentivizing homeowners' replacement of cesspools and failing or inadequate septic systems around a waterbody known to be impaired by septic system discharges.
DEC and DOH identified priority geographic areas in which property owners are eligible to participate based on the presence of a sole-source aquifer used for drinking water, known water quality impairment linked to failing septic systems, and/or the ability for septic system upgrades to mitigate water quality impairments, the release said.
EFC will provide detailed information about how to access the funding to counties with identified priority geographic areas.
Local areas included in the program are:
—Chenango County — Chenango Lake and Guilford Lake;
—Delaware County — Susquehanna River;
—Otsego County — Goodyear Lake, Susquehanna River;
—Schoharie County — Summit Lake.
The state will provide funds to counties to reimburse eligible property owners for a portion of the cost of replacing cesspools and septic systems and installing more environmentally effective systems. Eligible property owners can be reimbursed 50 percent of eligible costs up to $10,000. Counties may also set graduated incentive reimbursement rates for septic system projects to maximize program participation and pollution reduction goals.