Baker-Polito Administration Awards Drinking Water Supply Protection Grants


$1.1 Million Awarded to Five Massachusetts Water Suppliers

BOSTON – April 21, 2016 – The Baker-Polito Administration today awarded more than
$1.1 million in grants to five Massachusetts water suppliers through the Drinking
Water Supply Protection (DWSP) Grant Program. The funding, announced during Earth
Week, will enable water suppliers to protect existing or new wells, as well as
surface drinking water supply systems, such as reservoirs.

«Clean drinking water is vital to the health of all Massachusetts residents, and
these grants help protect land around the wells and reservoirs that provide water to
thousands of people, ensuring safe, healthy water resources for generations to
come,» said Governor Charlie Baker.

«The Baker-Polito Administration is pleased to partner with Municipalities and Water
Districts to jointly fund initiatives which will ensure the protection of public
water supplies for Massachusetts residents,» said Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito.

The Drinking Water Supply Protection (DWSP) Grant Program, overseen by the Executive
Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs, has provided grants to municipal and
public water systems and fire districts for the acquisition of land in fee, a
conservation restriction, or a watershed preservation restriction for water supply
protection and land conservation purposes since 2004. Land acquired must be located
in existing Department of Environmental Protection-approved drinking water supply
areas, or in estimated protection areas for new sources, or in an area identified
through an appropriate planning process as suitable for groundwater recharge to an

«The Drinking Water Supply Protection Grant Program ensures that Massachusetts
residents have access to safe, clean drinking water, said Energy and Environmental
Affairs Secretary Matthew Beaton. «The grants awarded by the Baker-Polito
Administration will enable municipalities to permanently protect their water
drinking sources.»

The Fiscal Year 2016 DWSP grant awards are:

* Amherst Department of Public Works – $175,625 to preserve 141 acres of
land that contain Amethyst Brook, which is located approximately 150 feet from the
Hills Reservoir (part of Amherst’s Pelham Reservoirs that provide almost a quarter
of Amherst’s drinking water).

* Centerville-Osterville-Marstons Mills Fire District – $197,000 to protect
11 acres of land to help create a wildlife corridor and protect the municipal water
supply for 12,500 households.

* Marshfield Department of Public Works – $274,125 to protect almost six
acres of land to prevent the contamination of the Furnace Brook Wells. This project
also consists of open fields, forest, and wetlands that connect to other protected
parcels and contain Natural Heritage and Endangered Species Program-mapped habitat
of rare wildlife.

* Mattapoisett Water and Sewer Department – $ 327,063 to protect 114 acres
of land within the Mattapoisett River watershed, which is a drinking water supply
source for five surrounding municipalities.

* Westfield Water Resource Department -$203,000 to acquire 80 acres of
watershed land located on high ground between two major tributaries that feed the
Granville Reservoir.

«I am quite pleased with the Administration’s decision to award the Mattapoisett
Water and Sewer Department a Drinking Water Supply Protection Grant,» said State
Representative William Straus (D-Mattapoisett). «This important grant program is
vital to ensuring that all residents of the Commonwealth have clean and safe
drinking water for generations to come.»

«This grant will help Amherst preserve and protect the area around Amethyst Brook
and the Hills Reservoir, which supplies us with fresh, clean drinking water,» said
Senate President Stan Rosenberg (D-Amherst). «I thank the Administration, and in
particular Secretary Beaton, for their continued recognition of the importance of
conservation and watershed protection.»

«The Mattapoisett River watershed provides drinking water for tens of thousands of
local residents across five South Coast communities,» said State Senator Mark
Montigny (D-New Bedford). «These funds will protect adjoining lands of this vital
natural resource, and I would like to thank Governor Baker and Secretary Beaton for
their commitment to ensuring access to clean, safe water supplies.»

«I am so pleased Marshfield won this competitive grant to enhance protections for
our local water supply,» said State Representative James Cantwell (D-Marshfield). «I
commend local officials, like Marshfield DPW Director Tom Reynolds and Karen
O’Donnell from the Open Space Committee, for submitting an outstanding proposal.
Along with protecting the local water supply, this grant will conserve open space
critical to the character of our town and the well-being of rare wildlife. I want to
thank Governor Baker and Secretary Beaton for their continued attention to public
health and water quality.»