Local water quality projects funded through Dept. of Ecology

New clean water projects and ongoing infrastructure investments are at the heart of the Department of Ecology’s latest round of grants and loans. 

This year, $309 million will support 136 projects.

Of the over $20 million requested by communities in Grays Harbor and Pacific counties, nearly $9 million was funded. 

This includes just over $355,000 offered in grant funding to the Grays Harbor Conservation District, $5.7 million offered in a standard loan between projects in Aberdeen, Hoquiam, and Long Beach, $2.5 million offered in forgivable loans, and two projects within Raymond went unfunded.

For Raymond, it was noted that a funding offer for one of the city’s projects was contingent on the completion of planning documents. Ecology states they discussed offering planning funds, however, the City declined at this time and has opted to reapply for funding in the future.

Applicant Project Title Project Category County Grant Requested/ Eligible Loan Requested/ Willing to Accept CWSRF Standard Loan CWSRF FP Loan CWSRF Loan Term (years) CWSRF Loan Interest Rate Centennial Grant Total Funding Funded/Unfunded Project Short Description
Aberdeen city of – Public Works Wastewater Collection System Improvements – I&I Reduction Wastewater Facility-Hardship Grays Harbor $750,000 $750,000 $750,000 $750,000 20 1.2% $0 $1,500,000 Funded This project will prepare a study to identify specific locations where external inflow and infiltration (I&I) enters the wastewater collection system during periods of intense precipitation, high groundwater levels or during high tide events. The study will be implemented and alternatives will be evaluated to determine the most cost-effective technology or institutional controls to provide long-term solutions to eliminate I&I and reduce sewer overflows; TV inspections will be completed.
Aberdeen city of – Public Works WWTP Primary and Secondary Clarifier Refurbishment Wastewater Facility-Hardship Grays Harbor $250,000 $250,000 $250,000 $250,000 20 1.2% $0 $500,000 Funded This project will replace 42 year old clarifier mechanisms, and rehabilitate the inner concrete surfaces, in the existing two 65 ft primary clarifier and existing two 85 ft diameter secondary clarifier.

The City of Aberdeen is currently on the Small Community Project Priority List (SCPPL) with urgent needs for WWTP upgrades to prevent catastrophic WWTP failures. Although the box for STEP 2 has been checked, this application requests funding for both design and construction under SCPPL.

Aberdeen city of – Public Works WWTP Aeration Basin and Emergency Power System Improvements Wastewater Facility-Hardship Grays Harbor $321,500 $321,500 $321,500 $321,500 20 1.2% $0 $643,000 Funded In this project, the existing aeration basins at the City of Aberdeen WWTP will be upgraded, and the emergency power system will be replaced with a new system that can power all the WWTP processes.

The City of Aberdeen is currently on the Small Community Project Priority List (SCPPL) with urgent needs for WWTP upgrades to prevent catastrophic WWTP failures. Although the box for STEP 2 has been checked, this application requests funding for both design and construction under SCPPL.

Grays Harbor Conservation District Grays Harbor Stream Team Water Quality Outreach and Education Nonpoint Source Activity Grays Harbor $355,337 $0 $0 $0 0.0% $355,337 $355,337 Funded The Grays Harbor Stream Team will expand successful outreach and education programs into targeted water quality impairment areas (Category 2, 4, and 5) of Grays Harbor County for temperature, dissolved oxygen, or bacteria. Events and programs will focus on riparian stewardship, macroinvertebrate monitoring, stormwater education, and water quality educational events. The desired outcome is to improve water quality by increasing our community’s knowledge and interest in stewarding water quality.
Hoquiam City of K Street Pump Station Improvements Wastewater Facility-SCPPL Grays Harbor $0 $3,205,948 $3,205,948 $0 20 1.2% $0 $3,205,948 Funded K Street Pump Station Improvements
Hoquiam City of Hoquiam Wastewater Pump Station Improvements Project Wastewater Facility-Hardship Grays Harbor $627,500 $627,500 $627,500 $627,500 20 1.2% $0 $1,255,000 Funded The project consists of required infrastructure improvements at five separate wastewater pump stations within the City of Hoquiam. Most of these five existing facilities require the installation of flow meters, roof membrane liners, backup generators, and control upgrades. Combining the five pump station projects into one larger project will reduce construction costs and meet the capital improvement project list prepared as part of the latest City Sewer Comprehensive Plan Update.
Long Beach city of City of Long Beach North Blvd Improvements Wastewater Facility-Hardship Pacific $742,500 $607,500 $607,500 $742,500 20 0.8% $0 $1,350,000 Funded The City of Long Beach was awarded a 1.8 million dollar loan to upgrade the water main from Pioneer Rd W to 26th NW along Ocean Beach Blvd N. TIB also awarded the city 215,000 for the overlay improvements. While working through this process, the city identified the need for stormwater and sewer improvements. There currently is no sewer or stormwater drainage in that area of town. The proposed project would address this need.
Raymond city of Willapa Regional WWTP Settling Mitigation Projects Wastewater Facility Pacific $210,250 $210,250 $0 $0 0 0.0% $0 $0 Unfunded The City of Raymond’s proposed project will plan, design and construct structural mitigation measures to address equipment failures and operational issues caused by settling of the soils underlying the Willapa Regional Wastewater Treatment Facility. Mitigation measures will address damage incurred since 2013 at the Control Bldg., Headworks, Solids Handling and Equipment Buildings. Access, worker safety, electrical, and differential site settling problems will also be addressed and mitigated.
Raymond city of City of Raymond USDA RD Refinance Wastewater Facility-Refinance Pacific $14,423,966 $0 $0 0 0.0% $0 $0 Unfunded The City of Raymond owns and operates the Willapa Regional Wastewater Treatment Plant (WWTP) which serves the City of Raymond and the nearby City of South Bend. The City of Raymond currently has two USDA Rural Development loans for construction of the WWTP that has a 40-year term and an interest rate of 2.125 percent. The loans mature in 2052. The City would like to refinance the USDA loans using Ecology funds. This will allow the city to have a shorter loan term and a better interest rate.

Nearly 90% of the funding Ecology’s water quality program receives is passed through to local communities through the Water Quality Combined Funding program. Washington’s clean water funding is a mix of state and federal funds dedicated toward improving and protecting water quality. This includes approximately $40 million from the 2021 Bipartisan Infrastructure law to assist small, financially disadvantaged communities and addressing emerging contaminants.

“Our top priority is to support communities. Across Washington, we are using innovative ideas to help put money to work faster and with greater benefits,” said Vince McGowan, Water Quality program manager. “We are excited to support clean water pilot projects that are already proving successful and to continue trying new approaches.”

This year’s project list includes new approaches to Ecology’s clean water funding work. To better support small communities and their infrastructure needs, Ecology is starting a pilot process where communities can apply for wastewater funding outside of the annual funding cycle. Through off-cycle planning, Ecology will work with communities or utilities that have an urgent need for funding wastewater planning projects. This could include post-emergency recovery efforts from natural disasters or projects that have received funding from other sources but still need to meet some of Ecology’s prerequisites. For the first project under the pilot, Ecology is providing $60,000 to help the Town of Metaline Falls update their general sewer plan, with specific emphasis on identifying and replacing aging infrastructure to prevent future emergencies. This investment will help the community make necessary progress on wastewater and stormwater infrastructure improvements and better protect the Pend Oreille River.  

Another new approach for the clean water funding list for this year is incorporating an Environmental Justice Assessment for grant or loan projects over $12 million dollars, as required under Washington’s HEAL Act. Six wastewater-related projects require environmental justice assessments this year. Ecology will finish the assessments for these projects in the coming months, prior to finalizing the project’s funding agreement.

Clean water projects by category

With 136 projects, cleaner water is on the way to many watersheds across the state. The full list of funded projects is available in an interactive map and in the final offer list publication.


Ecology will fund 57 wastewater projects, for a total of $255 million in grant and loan offers. Wastewater projects range from supporting designs for critical treatment plan updates in Toppenish with $1.5 million, to a $932,000 grant for the City of Mattawa to construct a new gravity sewer main line.

Ecology is funding 28 projects in communities eligible for financial hardship consideration. These are projects with 25,000 people or fewer in the community and where, without financial support, the project could lead to sewer fees costing more than 2% of median household income for the area. Given the critical service that wastewater treatment facilities provide, Ecology prioritizes supporting the planning, design, and construction of these facilities, particularly in areas where these investments would create a financial burden for residents.

Nonpoint and onsite sewage systems

Ecology is offering $17 million in funding for 39 projects that address nonpoint pollution, including four awards that support onsite sewage system programs and projects. This includes projects such as the Savvy Septic Program in Snohomish County. Ecology is offering the county a $500,000 grant to help residents repair and maintain their onsite sewage systems.

Ecology is also providing ongoing support for the Spokane Conservation District’s Hangman Creek Riparian Buffer Incentive Program. With $1 million in grant funding from Ecology, the Conservation District will continue to provide rental rates with long-term contracts for agricultural riparian land taken out of production. This program complements the existing available programs such as the Spokane Conservation District Commodity Buffer Program and Farmed Smart Certification Program. Since its start in 2022, the program has established 170 acres of riparian buffer. Learn more about our work in Hangman Creek.


For stormwater-related projects, Ecology is offering $37.5 million for 41 projects. Proposed work includes plans, designs, and construction to manage and reduce stormwater pollution. The Port of Everett is receiving a $255,000 grant to improve water quality in the East Waterway of Port Gardner Bay with the installation of a modular wetland linear system. This system can reduce the amount of copper, zinc, phosphorus, oils and other pollutants that make it into the water.

The City of Vancouver will receive $379,306 to support their Evergreen High School stormwater improvement design project. The grant will help fund stormwater retrofit designs to bring stormwater treatment to more than nine acres of parking lots currently without treatment. The city plans to address zinc, copper, 6PPD-quinone, bacteria and other pollutants with these improvements.

In January of this year, Ecology shared a draft list of projects to fund. Due to changes in loan funding availability, the final offer list is reduced from $386 to $309 million. At the same time, due to some entities declining Ecology’s funding and other adjustments, Ecology can now support 136 priority projects instead of the 134 originally planned.

Learn more

Ecology accepts clean water project applications every August through October. To learn more about the application process, visit Ecology’s clean water funding webpage.