Ohio’s $12B Need for Water Projects Dwarfs Federal Loan Aid

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TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) — The cost of maintaining pipes and treatment plants to keep drinking water flowing across Ohio is projected at $12 billion over the next two decades.

The staggering price tag dwarfs the $550 million that the U.S. government has given Ohio since the mid-1990s under the largest federal loan program for improving the nation’s drinking water systems.

An Associated Press review of the program shows Ohio is doing better than all but two other states in making sure its share of the money is being spent on drinking water.

Nationwide, the loan program has more than $1 billion sitting unspent in government accounts. But Ohio has less than $5 million, about 1 percent of its share, sitting idle.

State officials say they streamlined the process to spend the money more quickly.