Pure Water Oceanside Project To Receive $1.7 Million Federal Grant


Pure Water Oceanside Project purification plant in an undated still from a pr...

Credit: City of Oceanside

Above: Pure Water Oceanside Project purification plant in an undated still from a promotional video.

The Secretary of the Interior will be recommending a $1.7 million grant award for construction of the Pure Water Oceanside project, it was announced Friday.

The funding will be awarded via the Bureau of Reclamation’s WaterSMART: Title XVI WIIN Water Reclamation and Reuse Projects funding opportunity. Oceanside is one of 11 applicants named in the federal appropriations process for this funding.

“We are excited to continue working with the Bureau of Reclamation on Pure Water Oceanside,” said Cari Dale, Oceanside’s water utilities director. “Their continued support along with multiple grant, loan and incentive programs through the EPA, the Department of Water Resources as well as Metropolitan Water District and the San Diego County Water Authority continue to make local water supply development affordable for the city of Oceanside customers.”

Through the Title XVI program, U.S. Bureau of Reclamation provides grants to water districts and communities to reclaim and reuse wastewater and impaired ground and surface water in the Western United States. The funding may be used for the planning, design or construction of water recycling and reuse projects.

Scheduled to be complete in 2022, Pure Water Oceanside is intended to purify recycled water to create a new local source of high-quality drinking water that is clean, safe, drought-proof and environmentally sound. Project plans have it providing more than 32% of Oceanside’s water supply, or 3 to 5 million gallons per day, and being the first operating advanced water purification facility in San Diego County.

The city currently imports around 85% of its drinking water from the Sacramento Bay Delta and the Colorado River, hundreds of miles away.

Construction for the project is underway and includes a new water purification facility, pipelines under Douglas Drive and North River Road, three injection wells and monitoring wells.

Pure Water Oceanside was previously awarded a combined $6 million for the fiscal year 2019 and 2020 Title XVI WIIN grant opportunity, totaling $7.7 million with this year’s award. The city also received $3.115 million in state grant funding for the project from the Department of Water Resources. These funds result from Proposition 1, a bond measure approved by voters in 2014 to improve water infrastructure statewide.

EPA selected Pure Water Oceanside and portions of Oceanside’s recycled systems for a Federal WIFIA loan. The interest rate on the loan was 1.20%. Additionally, Metropolitan Water District and the San Diego County Water Authority also approved Local Resources Program funding, which provides a financial incentive to develop local water supplies. Other funding sources come from developers as well as ratepayers.

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