With the General Assembly a day away from its official start, a new study is projecting a state funding gap as high as $8.5 billion needed to cover wastewater and drinking water projects over the next 20 years. The research from the Indiana Advisory Commission on Intergovernmental Relations says state and local governments could experience annual shortfalls of $326 million to $423 million, if current spending stays where it is.
The report was sponsored by the Indiana Office of Community and Rural Affairs and was prepared by the Indiana University Public Policy Institute, which based the findings on data including self-reporting, surveys and engineering models. It took a year to complete.
State Representative Mike Karickhoff (R-30), chair of the commission, calls the situation a "significant challenge" at the state and local level. "There has been a lot of focus on roads infrastructure funding in the state," he said, "but it’s incredibly important that we are aware of the needs for wastewater and drinking water and take appropriate steps to close this funding gap."
"Financial Needs for Water and Wastewater Infrastructure in Indiana (2015-2034)" suggests Indiana will need to spend between $15.6 billion and $17.5 billion to meet infrastructure needs that include combined sewer overflows, wastewater, septic systems, storm water conveyance and management and drinking water in all 92 counties.
The estimates in the report, which was prepared by the Indiana University Public Policy Institute, are based on self-reporting, surveys, engineering models and other data depending on the type of infrastructure. The yearlong study was sponsored by the commission and the Indiana Office of Community and Rural Affairs.
Organization Day, the official kickoff of the legislative session, is set for Tuesday, November 22.
You can connect to more details on the report by clicking here.