Clean Water Advocacy - News Releases - February 26, 2002
For Immediate Release: February 26, 2002
Contact: Adam Krantz, 202/833-4651, AMSA
AMSA to Testify on Senate Water Investment Act
The Association of Metropolitan Sewerage Agencies (AMSA) applauds the leadership of the Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee in introducing the Water Investment Act of 2002 (S. 1961). AMSA believes Senators Bob Graham, Michael Crapo, James Jeffords, and Bob Smith have taken an important step to, as the bill title states, "improve financial and environmental sustainability of the water programs of the United States." AMSA recommends, however, that S. 1961 be significantly streamlined to direct the bill's funds to support the core needs of our communities ? infrastructure repair and replacement and compliance with costly regulatory requirements.
AMSA represents more than 270 publicly owned treatment works (POTWs) across the country which treat more than 18 billion gallons of wastewater each day and service the majority of the U.S. sewered population. AMSA's Executive Director, Ken Kirk, says, "S. 1961 is an important first step toward recognizing the need for increased wastewater infrastructure funding. At the same time," Kirk adds, "this legislation should focus more specifically on the urgent water and wastewater infrastructure needs this country faces, without new hurdles placed in the way of municipal access to these key funds."
On February 28, AMSA's Vice President and Executive Director of the Narragansett Bay Commission in Providence Rhode Island will provide EPW's Subcommittee on Fisheries, Wildlife and Water with AMSA's assessment of S.1961. Paul Pinault's testimony will go in-depth into several key recommendations that POTWs believe will improve the bill, including changes to S.1961 that would:
- focus on core infrastructure needs, including repair and replacement of aging pipes and facilities;
- fully fund the documented water infrastructure funding needs at an authorized level of $57 billion over five years through a combination of grant and loan funding options and ensure federal participation over the long-term;
- streamline state funding procedures; and
- invest in clean and safe water technology and management innovation to reduce infrastructure costs, prolong the life of America's water and wastewater assets, and improve the productivity of utility enterprises.
AMSA looks forward to continuing its work with EPW and thanks the Committee for taking this first important step towards ensuring and building upon the environmental and public health gains made over the past 30 years since enactment of the Clean Water Act.
1816 Jefferson Place, Washington, DC 20036-2505 202.833.AMSA 202.833.4657 FAX