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$1.75 million in federal funds will go to Mesa water infrastructure projects

Mesa Mayor John Giles and Arizona Congressman Greg Stanton on Monday announced roughly $1.75 million in federal money for two water infrastructure projects.

Stanton said the projects’ focus is on improving Mesa’s ability to make the most of its water supply.

“The city of Mesa manages one of the largest pipe infrastructure systems in Arizona — more than 2,500 miles of water mains. And some of those water mains are 50 years old, meaning they’re vulnerable to cracks and breaks.”

Roughly $1 million, he said, will go to improving Mesa’s water mains.

“These federal funds will go to inspect, repair, and upgrade the city's water pipes,” said Stanton. “Any defects, corrosion or thinning can be caught early, allowing the city to set [sic] brand new goal of zero water loss.”

The remaining $800,000, Stanton added, will go toward installing 12,000 smart meters for Mesa's water customers “to monitor their water usage in real time and quickly address any unusual activity or leaks.”

Mesa Mayor John Giles said the projects directly reflect the community’s needs.

“You’ve seen front page stories in national publications that are inaccurate, that discourage economic development here in Maricopa County, blaming water access as something that people ought to be concerned about,” said Giles. “Of course, we do need to be concerned about water. We do live in a desert. But we have a very robust water portfolio in Mesa.”

Including water conservation in plans for the future, said Giles, is essential.

Kirsten Dorman is a field correspondent at KJZZ. Born and raised in New Jersey, Dorman fell in love with audio storytelling as a freshman at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication in 2019.