Congress continued preparing to address major Administration priorities throughout the month of June, including an infrastructure package and tax reform which could impact clean water agencies. Efforts also continue to advance a FY18 spending package before the current fiscal year ends on September 30.
NACWA has been busy meeting with key Congressional Committee and Member offices to ensure that any infrastructure package includes funding and sound policy provisions for clean water, and that annual spending legislation preserves clean water programs. The Association is also having conversations regarding opportunities for regulatory improvements which might be addressed through legislation, addressing ratepayer affordability, and even defending D.C.’s wipes legislation (see related article).
While the Independence Day holiday and August recess often slow Congressional activity, the current highly partisan health care debate has also hindered progress on bipartisan issues like infrastructure investment. This was exemplified when a planned June 22 Senate Fisheries, Water, and Wildlife hearing on water infrastructure—where NACWA Board Member Andy Kricun of Camden County Municipal Utilities Authority was scheduled to testify on behalf of NACWA—was unexpectedly postponed due to the health care debate. A new date has not yet been set.
NACWA does anticipate Congressional staff will continue working diligently in the coming weeks to advance clean water infrastructure and investment legislation. Contact Kristina Surfus, NACWA Legislative Director, to discuss. Stay tuned for more developments this summer!