Eligible Applicants

Eligible Applicants

Eligible borrowers for Water Bank financing are the following:

  • CLEAN WATER: Owners of publicly-owned treatment works (towns, boroughs, municipal utilities authorities, counties, regional water authorities, other local government units, etc.) with projects to improve water quality are eligible for the Water Bank financing.

    Private entities, such as a developer, are eligible through public conduit borrowers.3

    Private colleges and universities may also be eligible for funding for nonpoint source pollution projects to help address water quality concerns under the Clean Water State Revolving Fund (CWSRF).4
  • DRINKING WATER: Public community water systems, both privately -and publicly-owned, and nonprofit non-community water systems (as defined by the National Primary Drinking Water Regulations) are eligible for Water Bank financing under the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund (DWSRF). Public community water systems owned by water commissions, water supply authorities, and water districts are also eligible.

In order to be eligible, applicants must also satisfy the Water Bank's creditworthiness standards, which are discussed in greater detail below. One of the long-term goals of the Water Bank is to increase access to capital markets for applicants that find it difficult or expensive to borrow the project funds on their own, due to lower credit ratings or a lack of familiarity with debt financing. The Water Bank maintains creditworthiness standards, which applicants can satisfy by identifying which of the following scenarios applies to the specific application situation:

  • If an applicant has an investment-grade rating from one of the following three (3) Nationally Recognized Statistical Rating Organization (NRSRO): Fitch Ratings, Inc., Moody's Investors Service, or S&P Global Ratings, the applicant satisfies the I-Bank's creditworthiness standards for Water Bank financing.
  • If a municipal applicant has a rating that is below investment grade and receives state aid, the Water Bank can guide you in issuing bonds through the State's Qualified Bond Act (QBA) in order to satisfy the I-Bank's creditworthiness standards to qualify for Water Bank financing.
  • If an applicant does not have an investment-grade rating and wishes to borrow more than $1 million, a private (or public) investment grade ratings assessment is required from one of the three NRSROs listed in the first point above to satisfy the creditworthiness standards in order to qualify for Water Bank financing.

Note, full details on the I-Bank's Credit Policy, can be found at: https://www.njib.gov/policiesand-procedures/

TIP: I-BANK STAFF CAN HELP INTERESTED BORROWERS IN THEIR INTERACTIONS WITH PRIVATE RATING AGENCIES OR THE NJ DEPARTMENT OF COMMUNITY AFFAIRS.

Every applicant is required to issue a bond pledging the repayment of Water Bank funds, in accordance with the New Jersey Local Bond Law, N.J.S.A. 40A:2-1 et seq.

The I-Bank provides a Water Infrastructure Savings Enabling (WISE) Act Calculator on its website at https://wise.h2loans.com. This calculator produces a Financing Cost Estimate (FCE) estimating the cost of financing an environmental infrastructure project through the I-Bank and DEP's joint Financing Program and compares this cost with the estimated cost of the Project Sponsor financing the project on its own. Additional information is provided in The WISE Act sub-section below.

Finally, I-Bank staff and their advisors provide detailed guidance on securing financing. For further information regarding the current regulations and policies of the I-Bank call the I-Bank at (609) 219- 8600.


3Public conduit borrowing is when a private party is involved in an environmental infrastructure project, and a local government unit sponsors the project on behalf of the private entity.

4The Clean Water State Revolving Fund (CWSRF) is a self-perpetuating federal loan assistance program for water quality improvement projects administered by DEP.

Eligible Applicants
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NEW JERSEY INFRASTRUCTURE BANK APPLICANT'S GUIDE