American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARPA)
Well Abandonment Grant
Gov. Evers Announces $10 Million to Improve Access to Clean Drinking Water Across the State.
If you wish to learn more about the American Rescue Plan Act Well Grant Programs, you can view a recording of the Nov. 10, 2022 webinar explaining the program here.
To determine if you are eligible to apply for a Well Abandonment Grant, please take the Eligbility Questionnaire.
The well abandonment grant program provides funding assistance to properly fill and seal abandoned or unused private or non-community public water system wells. Work completed before submitting an application and receiving DNR approval will not be reimbursed.
The Grant Announcement describes complete program details. If the Grant Announcement and the information provided on this website differ, the Grant Announcement will govern.
Who can apply
Who can apply
Before you start the application process, determine if you are eligible to apply for a well abandonment grant.
Step 1: Determine if your income is eligible
- For a private well serving a residence, family income may not exceed $100,000 for the prior calendar year.
- Annual Family Income is determined by the line on the previous year's WI State Income tax that reads, "This is your Wisconsin Income" on a jointly filed return. If you file as an individual, your single income will be used to determine income eligibility.
- For a non-community public system well, business income may not exceed $100,000 for the prior calendar year.
- Annual Business Income is determined by the line on your previous year's business/partnership WI State Income tax form that reads "This is Wisconsin Net Income" or "Income".
Step 2: Who may apply for a grant?
- Spouse of landowner
- Heir of landowner
- Assignee or legal representative of landowner
- Renter of land
- Shared well owner of a private residential water supply
- WI business owner of a non-community public water system with a well as a water sources (churches, daycare centers, rural restaurants and other small businesses.)
Local governments, school districts, and state or federal agencies cannot apply.
Step 3: What costs are covered by a grant?
Eligible costs are materials and labor to fill and seal eligible private or non-community wells that are abandoned or unused.
How to apply
Note: If you are having problems opening forms, visit PDF help.
If you are still having problems opening your form, please contact the Well Grant Manager.
If you are eligible to apply for a well abandonment grant, your next step is to apply. Do not have any work done before you apply and receive approval from DNR. Well abandonment work done before you apply and receive a grant approval will not be eligible for reimbursement under this grant program.
The following items must be included with the application claim:
- A copy of your most recently filed WISCONSIN (not Federal) Income Tax Form
- An Itemized cost estimate provided by the licensed well professional you plan to hire to complete your well abandonment
- W-9 Form (required for grant payment)
NOTE: If your current income changed significantly, due to job loss or retirement, from what was reported on your last year's WI Income Tax Form you must complete and submit one of the following documents with your application.
- Affidavit of Income Exempt Filing
- Affidavit of Income Reduction
- Affidavit of Projected Income for Current Year
Mail completed ARPA Well Abandonment Grant Application Claim (Form 870-393) and all required attachments to:
Well Grant Intake
WI DNR - DG/5
PO Box 7921
Madison WI 53707
You may also submit these items electronically to Well Grants Intake at DNRARPAWellGrants@wisconsin.gov.
If your well abandonment grant application claim is approved, you will receive an approval letter from DNR. Work completed before receiving the approval letter will not be reimbursed.
Once you have been awarded a well abandonment grant by DNR, you may begin and complete work abandoning your well and requesting reimbursement. You have one year from the date on the grant award document to properly fill and seal your old well and request payment from the DNR.
DNR will send you an award packet via email or mail if you do not have an email address.
- Award packet will contain:
- Three copies of the grant award agreement
- "DNR Copy" for you to sign and date
- "Your Copy" for your files
- one copy for the licensed well professional doing the abandonment
- An ARPA Well Abandonment Grant Payment Claim (8700-394)
- Three copies of the grant award agreement
Send the signed and dated "DNR Copy" of the grant award back to the DNR within ten days of the date of the award letter.
Schedule the abandonment work with the licensed well professional who provided the itemized estimate that was submitted with your grant application.
- Give a copy of the signed grant award document to the licensed well professional you hire before construction begins
- The unused private well must be properly abandoned and filled according to DNR specifications before reimbursement from the DNR is possible
After the well is properly abandoned, complete all the following required reimbursement forms:
- ARPA Well Abandonment Grant Payment Claim (8700-394) (Your licensed well professional should help you fill out the eligible cost portion of Form 8700-394 to reflect the actual costs)
- Well Abandonment Report (Form 3300-005). Your licensed well professional is required to submit this form electronically to the DNR and provide a printed copy to you
- A copy of the invoice provided by licensed well professional
You may submit the Payment Claim and required reimbursement information from Step 1 via email or mail to:
Well Grants Intake
WI DNR - DG/5
PO Box 7921
Madison WI 53707-7921
- Since you hired the licensed well professional to abandon your well, you are resonsible for all costs associated with the well abandonment. After you submit reimbursement request and we complete our review, a check for 100% of all eligible expenses will be sent to either you or the well professional that performed the work.
- To ensure that the work is paid for, it is DNR practice to mail your grant payment check to the well professional, unless you provide the DNR with an invoice marked "paid in full". If the check is mailed to the well professional, you will need to make arrangements to sign the check payable tothem for payment of services.
- If the invoice is marked "paid in full" at the time you submit the reimbursement request form, the grant payment check will be mailed to you.
- The grant amount you receive is considered taxable income by the IRS and must be reported as income. For income tax filing purposes, awards to individuals are considered "other income" by the Department of Internal Revenue Service (IRS). The Department of Natural Resources is required by the IRS to send a 1099G for tax filing purposes as a result of payment for this grant award claim.
- If you are concerned with how the receipt of the payment might affect your ability to receive food stamps, Medicare, or other such services or programs, you may wish to check with a representative of that program, social worker or other such people. Additional information regarding income tax issues can be obtained at www.irs.gov or the IRS hotline 1-800-829-1040.
If you are experiencing difficulties opening the ARPA Well Abandonment Grant Application Claim (Form 8700-393) or the ARPA Well Abandonment Grant Payment Claim (Form 8700-394), we have provided non-fillable pdf's of the forms below. Please print out a hardcopy and complete and sign the forms. Please be sure to select the correct form depending on whether you have a private well or a non-community well.
ARPA Well Abandonment Grant Application Claim (Form 8700-393)
Form W-9 (Request for Taxpayer Identification Number and Certification)
ARPA Well Abandonment Grant Payment Claim (Form 8700-394)
Funding for this grant program is provided to Wisconsin by the Federal American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARPA).
Where do I find my Wisconsin income on my Wisconsin income tax return?
To find the income line on your Wisconsin Income Tax Return look for the line that reads "this is your Wisconsin income". This is the total that determines if you are eligible to apply for a well grant.
Annual Business Income is determined by the line on your previous year's business/partnership WI State Income tax form that reads "This is Your Wisconsin Net Income" or "Income".
Is the grant award I receive taxable income by the IRS?
Yes, the grant amount you receive is considered taxable income by the IRS and must be reported as income. For income tax filing purposes, awards to individuals are considered “other income” by the Department of Internal Revenue Service (IRS). The Department of Natural Resources is required by the IRS to send a 1099G for tax filing purposes as a result of payment for this grant award claim.
If the claimant is concerned with how the receipt of the payment might affect their standing to receive food stamps, Medicare, or other such services or programs, the claimant may wish to check with a representative of that program, social worker or other such people. Additional information regarding income tax issues can be obtained at www.irs.gov or the IRS hotline 1-800-829-1040.
How much money can I get?
The ARPA Grant Program provides funding to pay for 100% of up to $16,000 in eligible costs.
What costs am I responsible for?
Since you will enter into a contract with well driller or licenses pump installer for their services, you are responsible to pay 100% of those costs. An ARPA Well grant from the DNR may not cover 100% of these costs. To ensure that contractor is paid, it is DNR practice to mail your grant payment check to the well driller or licensed pump installer, unless you provide the DNR with an invoice marked “paid in full” and signed and dated by the well driller or licenses pump installer at the time you submit reimbursement request form.
I’ve applied for a grant, when can the contractor start doing the work?
Work may not start until you have received a grant award letter from the DNR.
How will applications be prioritized?
Applications will be reviewed on an ongoing basis. Applications and claims will first be prioritized by the date a complete application or claim is received. The department may prioritize claims on a rolling basis based on the risk to public health.
How long will it take to get a grant award letter?
The time it takes to review and award grants will vary depending on the complexity of the application, volume of applications and staffing levels.