This bill proposes an appropriation of funds to the Department of Environmental Services for the purpose of enhancing regional drinking water infrastructure in Southern New Hampshire. Specifically, it allocates $2,000,000 from general funds and $4,500,000 from a combination of federal funds and the Drinking Water and Groundwater Trust Fund for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2025. The goal of this funding is to support Phase 2 of the Southern New Hampshire Regional Water Project, which aims to increase the water supply by over 2 million gallons per day to towns affected by PFAS contamination and to meet growing water demands. The project includes the design of ancillary projects, construction of chemical feed at existing water storage tanks in Derry and Salem, and raising the water level of Lake Massabesic. The funds are designated as nonlapsing, and the act is set to take effect on July 1, 2024.

The fiscal note attached to the bill indicates that the state impact of the appropriation is indeterminable at this time, as it is unclear how much will be funded by the PFAS Response Fund, the Drinking Water and Groundwater Trust Fund, or federal grants. The total expenditure for constructing the necessary infrastructure is estimated at $25 million. The Department of Environmental Services states that it will not require additional funds to administer the provisions of the bill and does not anticipate the need for new positions. Local revenue and expenditures are expected to increase as communities receive a portion of the appropriated funds for the project, but the specific amounts are indeterminable. There is no anticipated impact on county revenue or expenditures. The bill has deleted the fiscal impact on state and county levels, indicating that there will be no direct financial impact on these entities.