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Civil Engineers Support Introduction of Clean Water Trust Act
Dec 17, 2005

News this week sponsored by: YSI IncThe American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) backed the introduction of the Clean Water Trust Act of 2005, a bill that will create a federal program to provide a long-term, dependable funding source for our nation's critical water supply. Congressman John J. Duncan (2nd District Tenn. ), chair of the House Water Resources and Environment Subcommittee, introduced the legislation to address the projected shortfall in water infrastructure investment.

"The development of clean and safe drinking water systems is one of the greatest advancements in public health," said ASCE president Dennis Martenson, P. E. , DEE, F. ASCE. "I commend Representative Duncan for introducing this crucial legislation, and for taking the crucial first step in protecting and enhancing the health, safety and welfare of the nation's citizens. "

"Unless we act to improve our deteriorating wastewater infrastructure, we stand to lose the significant gains in water quality that have been achieved over the last 30 years, and the economic benefits of the investment the nation has made to date. This bill embraces innovative solutions for increasing investment in our wastewater treatment infrastructure to ensure that we will continue to keep our waters clean," Duncan said.

In March 2005, ASCE published the 2005 Report Card for America's Infrastructure, which gave the condition of the nation's drinking water and wastewater systems a grade of D-. The nation's drinking water system faces a staggering public investment need to replace aging facilities, comply with safe drinking water regulations and meet future needs. Federal funding in 2005 remains at $850 million, less than 10% of the total national need.

Aging wastewater systems discharge billions of gallons of untreated sewage into U. S. surface waters each year. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates the nation must invest $390 billion over the next 20 years to replace existing wastewater systems and build new ones to meet increasing demand.
If enacted, the legislation will:
- Create a dedicated, deficit-neutral Clean Water Trust Fund, similar to the federal transportation funding program;
- Restore the federal-state-local funding partnership needed to provide essential resources for upholding the Clean Water Act of 1972;
- Address the funding short-fall, estimated at nearly $500 billion by EPA; and
- Continue to guarantee the progress of high quality water established by the Clean Water Act.

In a recent public opinion poll by Frank Luntz, 86% of Americans supported the introduction of a bill in the U. S. Congress that would create a long-term, sustainable and reliable trust fund for clean water infrastructure. The Clean Water Trust Fund is supported by numerous organizations, including the National Association of Towns and Townships, the American Council of Engineering Companies, the Rural Community Assistance Partnership and the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership.

Contractors applaud effort to establish Clean Water Trust Fund
Dec 16, 2005 WaterWorld

Contractors applaud effort to establish Clean Water Trust Fund WASHINGTON, DC, Dec. 15, 2005 -- The Clean Water Trust Act of 2005, introduced today by Congressman John J. Duncan, Jr. (R? Tenn. ), Chairman of the House Water Resources and Environment Subcommittee would help to fund water and wastewater infrastructure needs to protect the environment and the economic well-being of the nation, according to Associated General Contractors of America (AGC). "The Clean Water Trust Act would provide more than $7 billion in annual funding, providing long-term, dependable funding for the nation's water and waste-water infrastructure," said AGC CEO Stephen E. Sandherr. "It is smart to support this legislation that allows for a better quality of American life. " The Clean Water Trust Act will: help urban and rural communities protect public health and the environment by restoring the federal-state-local financial partnership necessary to achieve the goals of the Clean Water Act; create a dedicated, deficit-neutral Clean Water Trust Fund, similar to those that successfully finance highways and airports; address the U. S. EPA's estimated clean water funding gap $300-500 billion; and
guarantee that over 30 years of water quality progress under the Clean Water Act is continued.

The federal commitment to fund water and wastewater infrastructure will assist in meeting federal requirements to protect the integrity of the environment and improve the economic well-being of the nation. Increased funding is sorely needed to eliminate the gap between available funds and the demonstrated need for these critical infrastructure programs.
The creation of a clean water trust fund would secure the long-term viability of the Clean Water State Revolving Fund (CWSRF). The CWSRF programs have provided a perpetual source of funding to build and improve the nation''s estimated clean water funding gap $300-500 billion; and

guarantee that over 30 years of water quality progress under the Clean Water Act is continued.

The federal commitment to fund water and wastewater infrastructure will assist in meeting federal requirements to protect the integrity of the environment and improve the economic well-being of the nation. Increased funding is sorely needed to eliminate the gap between available funds and the demonstrated need for these critical infrastructure programs.
The creation of a clean water trust fund would secure the long-term viability of the Clean Water State Revolving Fund (CWSRF). The CWSRF programs have provided a perpetual source of funding to build and improve the nation's vital water infrastructure while creating jobs and building revitalized communities. If funding were available, at least $7 billion in wastewater infrastructure projects could begin immediately, creating thousands of jobs. This increases the federal commitment by 700% annually. EPA's Gap Analysis reports the total need for clean wastewater facilities--in both capital and operations & maintenance--exceeds $270 billion over 20 years. For drinking water facilities, the gap approaches $265 billion. The Congressional Budget Office, Office of Management and Budget and several private studies agree that the needs run into the billions of dollars.

The Associated General Contractors of America (www. agc. org) is the largest and oldest national construction trade association in the United States. AGC represents more than 32,000 firms, including 7,000 of America''s Gap Analysis reports the total need for clean wastewater facilities--in both capital and operations & maintenance--exceeds $270 billion over 20 years. For drinking water facilities, the gap approaches $265 billion. The Congressional Budget Office, Office of Management and Budget and several private studies agree that the needs run into the billions of dollars.

The Associated General Contractors of America (www. agc. org) is the largest and oldest national construction trade association in the United States. AGC represents more than 32,000 firms, including 7,000 of America's leading general contractors, and over 11,000 specialty-contracting firms. More than 13,000 service providers and suppliers are associated with AGC through a nationwide network of chapters. ### Interested in a subscription to WaterWorld Magazine? Click here to subscribe!

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