Oct 10 2018
Washington—Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) released the following statement after the Senate passed the America’s Water Infrastructure Act, a bipartisan bill to improve the nation’s water infrastructure:
“Investing in our nation’s water infrastructure is vital to California. In addition to reauthorizing existing programs, this bill authorizes construction of 12 new water resource development projects nationwide to help provide communities with clean, safe drinking water.
“I’m pleased it includes my provision that moves us closer to creating a new loan program for water storage, water recycling, groundwater recharge and other water supply projects. Similar to other successful programs, this would allow local water agencies to secure low-cost Treasury loans that could reduce the costs for water projects by as much as 25 percent.
“As our climate continues to change, it’s important that we prepare for more severe droughts and increased flooding. This bill invests in a number of projects that will help California prepare for that future while providing us with access to more water now, and I’m proud to support it.”
The America’s Water Infrastructure Act:
- Requires the EPA and Bureau of Reclamation to submit a proposal on how they would jointly administer a new low-cost loan program for storage, water recycling, groundwater recharge and other water supply projects.
- Authorizes $4.4 billion to provide federal loans to states and utilities to improve drinking water infrastructure and wastewater and stormwater management.
- Authorizes construction of the Lower San Joaquin River project, which provides critical flood control to the Stockton metropolitan area.
- Doubles federal funding for the Harbor South Bay water recycling project, authorizing up to $70 million in federal funds.
- Authorizes a study for flood risk management, navigation, and ecosystem restoration project in the San Diego River.
- Directs the Army Corps to expedite flood risk management, water conservation and ecosystem restoration studies at the Coyote Valley Dam, Lower Cache Creek, Lower San Joaquin River, South San Francisco, Tijuana River, Westminster-East Garden Grove and San Luis Rey River.
- Increases funding for dam rehabilitation program for structures built before 1940 to prevent another disaster like the Oroville Dam.
- Reauthorizes and expands the Drinking Water State Revolving Loan Fund to address aging or damaged drinking water infrastructure in communities across the country.