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NACWA Applauds House Committee Work on Funding for Clean Water Infrastructure

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For Immediate Release: February 7, 2007

Contact:
Susan Bruninga, Director of Public Affairs, (202) 833-3280

NACWA Applauds House Committee Work on Funding for Clean Water Infrastructure

The National Association of Clean Water Agencies (NACWA) applauds the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee for moving quickly to mark up and report out two bills authorizing funding to benefit the nation’s clean water infrastructure. The bipartisan Water Quality Financing Act of 2007 (H.R. 720) would reauthorize the Clean Water State Revolving Fund (SRF) at $20 billion over fiscal years 2008-2012. NACWA also supports the Water Quality Investment Act of 2007 (H.R. 569) reported by the committee, which would authorize $1.8 billion from fiscal year 2008-2012 in grants to address sewer overflows.

NACWA strongly supports provisions in H.R. 720 calling for a six-month study on potential funding mechanisms and resources available to establish a clean water trust fund. NACWA believes the establishment of a trust fund, similar to what is available for highways and airports, is the most realistic option for financing the nation’s clean water infrastructure. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Government Accountability Office (GAO), and the Water Infrastructure Network (WIN) estimate the funding gap for this critical infrastructure at $300-$500 billion over 20 years, and it is clear that existing mechanisms for addressing this enormous funding gap fall far short.

NACWA recognizes that the Water Quality Financing Act of 2007 is only the first step. Congress must act to translate this authorization into real dollars, and NACWA stands ready to assist in this effort.

“We are grateful that Chairman Oberstar and members of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee have made clean water infrastructure a high priority and look forward to working with him and other members of the House and Senate to get this legislation to the President’s desk for signature,” Ken Kirk, NACWA executive director, said. “Ironically, the committee moved this legislation to significantly increase SRF funding the same week the Administration proposed in its fiscal year 2008 budget request for EPA to cut the program in half from historic levels. With the 35th anniversary of the Clean Water Act just around the corner, we should be moving forward — not backwards — to ensure a significant federal recommitment to clean water infrastructure that will benefit the nation’s waterways.”

NACWA members are proud of their service as environmental stewards, devoting their lives to ensuring clean water for all Americans. NACWA looks forward to working with Chairman Oberstar, Ranking Member Mica, and other committee members on developing legislation that guarantees a robust SRF and a reliable source of funding to protect America’s clean water infrastructure and precious water resources for generations to come.


NACWA represents the interests of nearly 300 of the nation’s publicly owned wastewater treatment works, serving the majority of the sewered population in the United States, collectively treating and reclaiming over 18 billion gallons of wastewater every day.


1816 Jefferson Place, Washington, DC 20036-2505 • 202.833.2672 • 202.833.4657 FAX • www.nacwa.org


 
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