Emergency supplies of drinking water; drought; well construction and water transportation
The Secretary, upon a written request for assistance under this paragraph made by any farmer, rancher, or political subdivision within a distressed area, and after a determination by the Secretary that (A) as a result of the drought such farmer, rancher, or political subdivision has an inadequate supply of water, (B) an adequate supply of water can be made available to such farmer, rancher, or political subdivision through the construction of a well, and (C) as a result of the drought such well could not be constructed by a private business, the Secretary, subject to paragraph (3) of this subsection, may enter into an agreement with such farmer, rancher, or political subdivision for the construction of such well.
The Secretary, upon a written request for assistance under this paragraph made by any farmer, rancher, or political subdivision within a distressed area, and after a determination by the Secretary that as a result of the drought such farmer, rancher, or political subdivision has an inadequate supply of water and water cannot be obtained by such farmer, rancher, or political subdivision, the Secretary may transport water to such farmer, rancher, or political subdivision by methods which include, but are not limited to, small-diameter emergency water lines and tank trucks, until such time as the Secretary determines that an adequate supply of water is available to such farmer, rancher, or political subdivision.
Any agreement entered into by the Secretary pursuant to paragraph (1) of this subsection shall require the farmer, rancher, or political subdivision for whom the well is constructed to pay to the United States the reasonable cost of such construction, with interest, over such number of years, not to exceed thirty, as the Secretary deems appropriate. The rate of interest shall be that rate which the Secretary determines would apply if the amount to be repaid was a loan made pursuant to section 636(b)(2) of title 15
The Secretary shall not construct any well pursuant to this subsection unless the farmer, rancher, or political subdivision for whom the well is being constructed has obtained, prior to construction, all necessary State and local permits.
The Federal share for the transportation of water pursuant to paragraph (2) of this subsection shall be 100 per centum.
For purposes of this subsection—
the term “construction” includes construction, reconstruction, or repair;
the term “distressed area” means an area which the Secretary determines due to drought conditions has an inadequate water supply which is causing, or is likely to cause, a substantial threat to the health and welfare of the inhabitants of the area including threat of damage or loss of property;
the term “political subdivision” means a city, town, borough, county, parish, district, association, or other public body created by or pursuant to State law and having jurisdiction over the water supply of such public body;
the term “reasonable cost” means the lesser of (i) the cost to the Secretary of constructing a well pursuant to this subsection exclusive of the cost of transporting equipment used in the construction of wells, or (ii) the cost to a private business of constructing such well;
the term “Secretary” means the Secretary of the Army, acting through the Chief of Engineers; and
the term “State” means a State, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, and the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands.
Increased level of protection
In conducting repair or restoration work under subsection (a), at the request of the non-Federal sponsor, the Chief of Engineers may increase the level of protection above the level to which the system was designed, or, if the repair or restoration includes repair or restoration of a pumping station, increase the capacity of a pump, if—
the Chief of Engineers determines the improvements are in the public interest, including consideration of whether—
the authority under this section has been used more than once at the same location;
there is an opportunity to decrease significantly the risk of loss of life and property damage; or
there is an opportunity to decrease total life cycle rehabilitation costs for the project; and
the non-Federal sponsor agrees to pay the difference between the cost of repair or restoration to the original design level or original capacity and the cost of achieving the higher level of protection or capacity sought by the non-Federal sponsor.
[Aug. 18, 1941, ch. 377, § 5], [55 Stat. 650]; [July 24, 1946, ch. 596, § 12], [60 Stat. 652]; [July 26, 1947, ch. 343], title II, § 205(a), [61 Stat. 501]; [June 30, 1948, ch. 771], title II, § 206, [62 Stat. 1182]; [May 17, 1950, ch. 188], title II, § 210, [64 Stat. 183]; [June 28, 1955, ch. 194], [69 Stat. 186]; [Pub. L. 87–874, title II, § 206], Oct. 23, 1962, [76 Stat. 1194]; [Pub. L. 93–251, title I, § 82], Mar. 7, 1974, [88 Stat. 34]; [Pub. L. 95–51, § 2], June 20, 1977, [91 Stat. 233]; [Pub. L. 99–662, title IX, § 917], Nov. 17, 1986, [100 Stat. 4192]; [Pub. L. 100–45, § 9], May 27, 1987, [101 Stat. 323]; [Pub. L. 100–707, title I, § 109(m)], Nov. 23, 1988, [102 Stat. 4709]; [Pub. L. 101–640, title III, § 302], Nov. 28, 1990, [104 Stat. 4633]; [Pub. L. 104–303, title II, § 202(e)], (f), Oct. 12, 1996, [110 Stat. 3675]; [Pub. L. 113–121, title III, § 3029(a)], June 10, 2014, [128 Stat. 1305]; [Pub. L. 114–322, title I, § 1176], Dec. 16, 2016, [130 Stat. 1673]; [Pub. L. 115–270, title I], §§ 1160, 1161(a), 1162, Oct. 23, 2018, [132 Stat. 3795], 3796; [Pub. L. 116–260, div. AA, title I, § 120], Dec. 27, 2020, [134 Stat. 2633].)