AMSA Fully Supports House Wastewater Security Bill

Clean Water Advocacy - News Releases - July 25, 2002

For Immediate Release: July 25, 2002
Contact: Adam Krantz, 202/833-4651, AMSA

AMSA Fully Supports House Wastewater Security Bill

The Association of Metropolitan Sewerage Agencies (AMSA) commends the bipartisan leadership of the House Transportation and Infrastructure (T&I) Committee for introducing H.R. 5169, the Wastewater Treatment Works Security Act of 2002. AMSA fully supports moving forward as expeditiously as possible with H.R. 5169, which provides much-needed funding for municipal treatment works to perform vulnerability assessments and make critical security enhancements.

“AMSA’s more than 270 public agency members, who serve the majority of the U.S. population, are public servants dedicated to making clean water progress and to ensuring that their plants, employees and customers are made as safe as possible. H.R. 5169 will provide municipalities with the tools needed to meet this important objective. AMSA stands ready to help this legislation become a reality,” says Ken Kirk, AMSA’s Executive Director.

AMSA applauds Chairman Don Young (R-AK) and Ranking Member James Oberstar (D-MN) of the T&I Committee, as well as Chairman John Duncan (R-TN) and Ranking Member Peter DeFazio (D-OR) of the Water Resources and Environment Subcommittee, for introducing this bill with the bipartisan consensus H.R. 5169 deserves. By doing so, the T&I leadership helps ensure that this legislation obtains similar bipartisan support as it moves through Committee today and ultimately into law.

The main goals set forth in H.R. 5169 — to conduct vulnerability assessments of publicly owned treatment works and to implement security enhancements to reduce vulnerabilities identified in a vulnerability assessment — will help make sure that this nation’s critical infrastructure is more secure. AMSA has also worked closely with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Congress to develop a vulnerability self assessment software tool, called VSATwastewater, which was released July 23 and will be distributed to public wastewater treatment agencies nationwide. More information is available on this software tool at

As municipalities face the triple expenses of upgrading aging wastewater infrastructure, dealing with the daunting costs of wet weather requirements, and, in the wake of September 11, 2001, facing large security upgrade costs, H.R. 5169 plays a key role by providing vital financial help at a critical juncture for municipalities. AMSA looks forward to making H.R. 5169 a reality during this session of Congress.

AMSA is a national trade association representing over 270 of the nation's public wastewater utilities who are, despite a sharp decline in federal funding, dealing with the expensive challenges of an ailing infrastructure comprised of old, worn pipes and treatment facilities in desperate need of upgrades. These wastewater treatment officials are environmental practitioners dedicated to protecting and improving the nation's public health and its water, and collectively treat and reclaim over 18 billion gallons of wastewater every day.

1816 Jefferson Place, Washington, DC 20036-2505 • 202.833.AMSA • 202.833.4657 FAX