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Intent to Apply and Priority Evaluation & Ranking Formula

Each municipality that plans to apply for financial assistance for their water infrastructure project, from either the Clean Water Fund Program (CWFP) or the Safe Drinking Water Loan Program (SDWLP), is required to complete and submit online a notice of Intent to Apply (ITA) with Priority Evaluation & Ranking Formula (PERF) information and required documentation by the October 31 deadline for the following state fiscal year (SFY) funding cycle. All ITAs must be submitted online annually because they are only valid for one SFY.

  • ITAs submitted by November 1, 2021, are eligible for funding in SFY 2023, which begins July 1, 2022, and ends June 30, 2023.
    • Note: When the October 31 deadline falls on a weekend, that deadline, by statute is extended to Monday.

You may wish to save or print the following guidance documents to view during the online submittal process:

Intent to Apply

The ITA provides the essential information about your project that continues for the life of your project. It is very important that the information contained in the ITA be as accurate and descriptive as possible to maximize your eligibility for project costs in the future.

Submit does not mean commit

Submitting an ITA does not commit a municipality to apply for financial assistance from the CWFP or SDWLP. If eligible, a valid ITA simply ensures the project is listed on the Project Priority List (PPL) for that SFY, which makes the municipality eligible to submit an application for funding, if that is their desire.

Resubmit if your project doesn't move forward

If you're not sure when your project will need funding, submit an ITA early in the planning process. If your project doesn't move forward, you can resubmit your ITA for the following SFY funding cycle.

In the online system, municipalities can view lists of all their previously submitted ITAs. When viewing the details of an ITA, municipalities can copy a previous ITA to create a new one. An existing ITA's information may be updated and reused for future project entries.

  • If you're going to reuse an ITA, remember to update the project costs for each year.
  • Be sure to describe the project scope in detail. Your application's project scope must match that of your ITA's to be eligible for funding.

Submit separately

For a project with both a CWFP and SDWLP component (for example, replacing sewer and water mains) a municipality needs to submit a separate CWFP and SDWLP ITA to be eligible to apply for funding for both costs.

For CWFP projects, if the municipality is seeking funding for both a wastewater treatment plant project and a collection system project, each need to be submitted as separate ITAs; wastewater treatment plant projects and collection system projects each have unique scoring criteria.

For SDWLP projects, a municipality also needs to be sure to submit an ITA for each distinct project for which they are planning to submit an application. For example, if a municipality is planning on providing additional treatment at one well and upgrading the well-house and appurtenances at another well, each of those distinct activities needs a separate ITA. Because funding is more limited in the SDWLP, the department is careful to score each distinct project separately in case there are insufficient funds for the applications submitted any given year. The department priority score reflects the human health and environmental impacts each distinct project will address.

Submit details

In order for the department to determine whether a municipality is requesting assistance for more than one project and for scoring purposes, the project scope description on the ITA must concisely provide details.

Detailed Project Scope Description:

  • Explain the reason for the project, including the problem to be solved.
  • Describe the overall scope of the project and the proposed solution to the problem.
    • Example: State whether you will construct treatment or dig a new well to solve a problem with high radium levels in an existing well.
  • Describe in detail all significant portions of the project's proposed solution, including:
    • Any new construction or installation of structures, equipment or processes;
    • Any upgrade, repair, replacement, or modifications of existing equipment or facilities;
    • Any modifications to existing processes; and
    • Include project location(s), street location(s), street names, names of water bodies and other useful information.

Priority Evaluation and Ranking Formula

The information provided in the ITA's PERF section reflects the human health and environmental impacts the project will address and determines its priority score. The help text in the online system contains information about what type of supporting documentation to attach for that question/section. The Principal Forgiveness (PF) allocation methodology is structured to allocate PF funds to projects with the highest priority scores in municipalities with the greatest financial need.

Upload documents for PERF points

Appropriate supporting documentation will be required in order to receive PERF points (for both loan programs). If relevant documentation is not uploaded, zero points will be given for that question. Don't submit your ITA/PERF until you've uploaded all your documents.

Project Priority List

DNR publishes an annual Project Priority List (PPL) for the CWFP and the SDWLP. A PPL includes projects for which municipalities submitted ITAs by the October 31 deadline for the following state fiscal year funding cycle. The PPL identifies, in priority score order, the projects for which municipalities may submit a financial assistance application for either the CWFP or SDWLP for the corresponding state fiscal year.

If you decide to apply for funding for your eligible project listed on the PPL, review:

Contact information
For information on the CWFP, contact:
Lisa Bushby, CWFP Coordinator
For information on the SDWLP, contact:
Matt Marcum, interim SDWLP Coordinator
For information about the online system, contact:
Becky Mesdjian, Database manager

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Disclaimer of guidance: This document is intended solely as guidance and does not contain any mandatory requirements except where requirements found in statute or administrative rule are referenced. Any regulatory decisions made by the Department of Natural Resources in any matter addressed by this guidance will be made by applying the governing statutes and administrative rules to the relevant facts. Program implementation details are outlined in the governing administrative codes and statutes: §§ 281.58 and 281.59 and 281.61, Wis. Stat., and chs. NR 162 and 166, Wis. Adm. Code.