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Pretreatment Capacity



The second round of funding for ARPA wastewater pretreatment proposals is now closed. There are currently no plans to have a third round of funding.

ARPA Funding Overview

The expansion of Vermont’s food and beverage manufacturing, including craft brewing, dairy processing, and meat processing provides economic opportunity in many Vermont communities. These businesses, however, often produce high strength wastes that can be challenging for municipal wastewater facilities to treat.

Pretreatment facilities remove or reduce harmful pollutants before they are discharged to municipal wastewater treatment facilities. In addition, pretreatment processes can address emerging contaminants and toxic chemicals, such as per- and polyfluorinated substances (PFAS).

As of February 2023, $7 million of ARPA funds have become available for wastewater pretreatment projects.

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Funding Details

Grant funding can be used by the municipality to create and disseminate an industrial user survey (IUS) in order to gather information about industrial users, to develop local pollution limits to protect the wastewater treatment facility, or to update a Sewer Use Ordinance. Funding may also be distributed by the municipality to industrial users to implement, improve or expand pretreatment systems. Funding may not be used by a municipality to upgrade its wastewater treatment facility.

Pass-through training video - covers pass-through funding for ARPA wastewater pretreatment grants


Eligible projects include implementing or improving treatment systems for high-strength or toxic wastewater discharged to a Vermont municipal wastewater treatment facility, developing municipal local limits, implementing pollution prevention, developing industrial user surveys, and treating leachate.

Projects receiving ARPA funding for water and sewer-related investments from the Agency of Natural Resources, including Pretreatment Initiative projects, must follow US Treasury guidance which requires that projects meet project eligibility criteria applied to the Clean Water State Revolving Loan Fund. Under these requirements, municipalities can expect to receive grant funds to support municipal pretreatment work or to pass funds to private entities to support the planning, design, and construction of privately-owned pretreatment infrastructure.

Projects for private entities must pass through municipalities to be eligible for funding. Successful projects will include a solid partnership between municipalities and private entities.

Equity Considerations

ARPA funds will help disadvantaged communities address the public health and economic crises caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and help protect them from future crises.

The Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation will prioritize inclusion and engagement with under-represented groups to advance environmental justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion through project selection. The prioritization rubric will prioritize funding that supports minority and women-owned business and businesses owned by economically disadvantaged individuals.

Learn More

Watch the info session to learn more about this funding opportunity.

Request for Information

In November 2021, DEC released a Request for Information (RFI) to seek information from municipalities and private sector businesses related to their industrial and municipal wastewater pretreatment needs. The RFI closed on November 19, 2021.

Responses to the RFI enabled the DEC to better understand how potential projects may be funded by the ARPA pretreatment program and what barriers may be present in current funding mechanisms. 

Request for Proposals

Through an RFP, Vermont DEC’s Wastewater Program sought eligible pretreatment projects that will be completed by December 2026. For Round 1, DEC staff reviewed proposals from municipalities and private entities and notified awardees in January 2023. For Round 2, DEC staff reviewed proposals from municipalities and private entities and notified awardees in October 2023. At this time, there are no plans to have a third round of funding.

Program Contact: Ashley Hellman - email Ashley, phone: 802-522-9721