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Rebuilding with Water Conservation in Mind: Texas' SWIFT Program

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Presentation by Tom Entsminger, State Programs Coordinator at the Texas Water Development Board, at the 2018 Gulf Coast Water Conservation Symposium in Houston, Texas.

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Rebuilding with Water Conservation in Mind: Texas' SWIFT Program

  1. 1. 1
  2. 2. Topics • SWIFT Overview • Project Eligibility • Application Process Overview • Other TWDB Resources 2
  3. 3. 3 Eligible Projects • Recommended Water Management Strategies in the state water plan • The plan includes a wide range of water supply and conservation projects • All project phases eligible: Planning, Acquisition, Design, and Construction Financing Options • Low-interest loans • Deferred loans • Board Participation • Multi-year commitments
  4. 4. 4 Low-Interest Loans Rural/Agriculture Term Tax-Exempt Taxable Tax-Exempt Taxable 20 Years 35% 28% 50% 40% 21-25 Years 25% 20% 34% 27% 26-30 Years 20% 16% 27% 22% Low-Interest Loans: Rural/Ag Eligibility: • Agricultural water conservation/irrigation project; or • Project serving a population of 10k or less, which falls entirely outside urbanized areas as defined in most recent US Census data.
  5. 5. 5 • Enhances conservation efforts while reducing operational costs • Includes automated leak detection • Anticipated annual conservation savings of 9,450 acre-feet • $76 million total SWIFT commitment • Multi-year commitment allowed 2 closings to match project phases • Cumulative savings of $1,769,707 compared to open market
  6. 6. 6 Bedford Distribution System Improvements • Replacement of 90% of the city’s existing distribution system • Approx. 15,000 meters • $90 million multi-year commitment • Closed on $50 million so far • Cost savings of $4,002,142 compared to open market
  7. 7. 7 Hidalgo County Irrigation District No. 1 • Project adds lining to an existing earthen canal • Seepage & breaks limit availability of irrigation water • Reinforced geomembrane & concrete lining • $7,100,000 SWIFT commitment • Cost savings of $916,215 compared to open market
  8. 8. Is my project eligible for SWIFT? 8 Is it a recommended water management strategy in the state water plan? Is there an associated capital cost? Not sure? TWDB’s planning staff can help!
  9. 9. Development of Recommended Strategies 9 identify “potentially feasible” strategies evaluate potentially feasible strategies compare evaluated strategies recommend strategies that are “cost- effective & environmentally sensitive” 31 TAC 357.35(b) Regional Water Planning Groups:
  10. 10. Regional evaluation based on: • water quantity and reliability • financial costs • impacts to environment and agriculture • impacts to water quality • other factors such as regulatory requirements, time required to implement, etc. 10
  11. 11. 11 Amendments Regional and State plans can both be amended to add strategies and/or capital costs The process takes time and may involve some additional costs First step: contact your regional planning group
  12. 12. Regional Group considers request TWDB validation of “minor” classification (up to 45 days) 14-day notice period Regional Group makes decision 14-day follow-up comment period Regional Amendment Processes Regional Group considers request 30-day hearing notice Hearing 30-day comment period Regional Group makes decision 12 Major Amendments: 62+ Days Minor Amendments: 30 - 45+ Days
  13. 13. State Water Plan Amendments Regional Amendment sent to TWDB TWDB reviews amendment 30-day hearing notice Hearing TWDB makes decision on adoption 13 The State Water Plan is amended after regional amendments are finalized.
  14. 14. SWIFT Funding Cycle Submit Abridged Application (Stay Tuned for Dates) TWDB Staff perform prioritization & capacity modeling Invitation to submit full applications Application review and funding commitments Applicants close on loans 14
  15. 15. Abridged Application Asks only for the info needed for prioritization (31 TAC §363.1304) Uses information already developed during the planning process: no new work required No commitment associated with Abridged Application submittal Technical assistance available throughout the process 15 Apply Online!
  16. 16. Online Loan Application System 16 https://ola.twdb.texas.gov/
  17. 17. Prioritization Criteria 17 Highest Consideration Max Points Population served 30 Diverse urban and rural Benefit 30 Regionalization (number of entities served in addition to the applicant) 30 Percentage of water supply needs met by the project 30 Additional Criteria Max Points Local contribution 5 Financial Capacity 2 Emergency Need 5 Readiness to Proceed 8 Demonstrated or projected conservation 15 Regional planning group priority rank 15 “Highest Consideration” Score Capped at 50 Points “Additional Criteria” Max Subtotal: 50 Points +
  18. 18. Full Application • Contact Information • Legal • Financial • Project Details Technical Assistance Available! 18 Online option also available
  19. 19. How to Get Started 19 CONTACT US! Team 1 Panhandle/West Regions: A/O/E/F Lee Huntoon (512) 463-6021 Team 2 Brazos Regions: G/B Caaren Skrobarczyk (512) 475-1128 Team 3 Northeast Regions: C/D Luis Farias (512) 475-4816 Team 4 East Regions: H/I Nancy Richards (512) 463-0250 Team 5 Central Regions: J/K/L/P Dain Larsen (512) 463-1618 Team 6 South Regions: M/N Mireya Loewe (512) 475-0590
  20. 20. Conservation at TWDB • Offers low interest rates based on TWDB’s cost of funds (AAA Bond Rating) Texas Water Development Fund (DFund) • Offers subsidization of 125 basis points below borrower’s cost of funds, plus partial principal forgiveness Drinking Water State Revolving Fund (DWSRF) • Funds projects and research with agricultural conservation benefit Agricultural Water Conservation Grants/Loans 20
  21. 21. Conservation at TWDB 21 Regardless of the funding source, applicants requesting $500,000 or more must have active Water Conservation Plans on file TWDB’s Conservation staff provide technical assistance to help systems develop their plans
  22. 22. Other TWDB Resources 22 ProjectFinancing • Water • Wastewater • Flood Control • Nonpoint Source Pollution Control • Emergency projects Science • Groundwater availability • Environmental flows • Lake surveys • Conservation • Innovative Technologies • TexMesonet (Weather Data) Planning • State Water Plan • Interface with regional water planning groups • Water Use Surveys Data • State’s official repository for mapping & GIS data • Demographics • Flood data • Interactive State Water Plan
  23. 23. 23 TexasStateWaterPlan.org
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  27. 27. Monthly Workshops • Meet your Regional Team • Learn about TWDB financing • Make real progress! Sugar Land – April 10 Pleasanton – May 8 Beeville – June 5 27
  28. 28. Thanks! Tom Entsminger TWDB State Programs Coordinator (512) 936-0802 Tom.Entsminger@twdb.texas.gov 28

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