(October 3, 2017) -- The Senate passed a bill last week that would provide federal support and advance research into the underlying causes of Harmful Algal Blooms (HABs). Introduced by Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL), the bipartisan Harmful Algal Bloom and Hypoxia Research and Control Amendments Act (S. 1057) gives the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and EPA the authority to declare a HAB a “nationally significant event,” which would trigger federal funding for assessment and mitigation. The bill also advances federal research regarding the causes and responses to HABs. NACWA will monitor progress as the bill awaits potential consideration in the House of Representatives.
In a related develop, the Senate Environment & Public Works (EPW) Committee is scheduled to hold confirmation hearings on Oct. 4 for a number of EPA nominees, including for David Ross as nominee to lead the Office of Water. A livestream of the hearing will be available on the EPW website.
Contact NACWA’s Legislative Director, Kristina Surfus, for more information.