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Statement by Congressman Kildee on Low-Income Household Water Assistance Program

June 3, 2021
Press Release

FLINT—Congressman Dan Kildee (MI-05), Chief Deputy Whip of the House Democratic Caucus, issued the following statement after it was announced that the first Low Income Household Water Assistance Program (LIHWAP) grant funding will be released:

“Access to clean and affordable drinking water should be a basic human right. Some of the poorest communities in America pay the highest water rates in the country. Many communities facing larger systemic issues like job loss, population loss and failing infrastructure have resorted to increasing water rates, shifting the burden to families and ratepayers. People in my hometown of Flint pay nearly double the national average for water. But Flint is not alone. In other communities across America, high water rates have especially hurt lower-income households, who pay a disproportionate amount of their income for water service.

“I was proud to have worked in Congress to create this new $1.1 billion program to help low-income households get much-needed assistance with their water bills. I look forward to continuing to work with the Biden-Harris administration to get economic relief into people’s pockets quickly.”

Congressman Kildee has been a champion for clean water programs. In a recent COVID-19 relief package passed by Congress, Kildee secured $638 million in new federal funding to help ratepayers with their water bills. As a result of a letter sent to Republican and Democrat leaders in Congress, Kildee secured an additional $500 million in funding for the program in the American Rescue Plan. The newly created Low-Income Household Drinking Water and Wastewater Emergency Assistance Program, through the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, will provide grants to states to help low-income families that pay a high proportion of their household income on water utility services.