The State Revolving Funds (SRF) are federally capitalized loan programs which are jointly administered by the SC Rural Infrastructure Authority (RIA) and the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC). Low-interest loans are made available to municipalities, counties and special purpose districts statewide for a variety of clean water and drinking water projects.
The SC Water Quality Revolving Fund Authority (Authority) is responsible for the financial aspects of the SRF programs as designated by the General Assembly. RIA’s Office of Local Government serves as staff for the Authority and administers all of the financial responsibilities such as loan policies, loan applications and credit reviews, loan agreements and disbursements, as well as loan administration activities including repayments. Loan policies are updated and published annually.
There are key advantages to financing infrastructure improvements through the SRF programs that will directly translate into savings for rate-paying customers:
The SC Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) acts as the federal grantee and handles the technical aspects of the SRF programs. Such responsibilities include review of preliminary engineering reports, project plans and specifications, issuance of construction permits and compliance with federal requirements. Federal requirements such as environmental review, equal employment opportunity, disadvantaged businesses, American iron and steel as well as Davis Bacon wage rates may apply to SRF funded projects.
Project requests may be submitted at any time using the appropriate project questionnaire (PQ) for the Clean Water or Drinking Water program. Projects are evaluated and scored based on a priority ranking system. An Intended Use Plan (IUP) is published annually which describes how SRF funding is anticipated to be used and includes a list of the priority projects that are expected to proceed during the fiscal year.
In the past, the SRF loan policies including interest rates, loan terms, fees, security requirements as well as repayment policies have been updated each October. For the first time in FY 2020, the interest rates will be subject to change on March 1, 2020. There is a standard interest rate applicable to most loans and additional discounted rates which are made available based on priorities such as helping qualified smaller systems.
The application process involves technical and financial steps which begin with submission of a project questionnaire. Understand the process and activities that are eligible.
Learn more about the loan terms, interest rates and security associated with SRF programs.
Are you thinking about applying for a loan, or have you already been approved and have questions? View our FAQ section for more information.