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Brockton is one of 20 recipients of “forgiveness grants” from the Massachusetts Water Pollution Abatement Trust to help reduce the principal balance on loans for water infrastructure. Trust officials announced more than $6 million in grants last week. In a statement, state Treasurer Steve Grossman, who is chairman of the trust, said funds will help cities and towns that are struggling to finance water projects for the well-being of citizens. Brockton will receive $71,000 to reduce its overall loan of $711,700, officials said. City Finance Director Jay Condon said the grants, which are applied for competitively, are applied against the loan balance for water projects, saving on debt service costs for ratepayers. The funds were used to install a surge-protection system on the 24-inch mains from the Silver Lake water plant, he said, which provides the city’s drinking water.