Category Archives: Affordability and Finances

Thank You NACWA Members for a Great 2016 . . . But We Have a Lot of Work Ahead!

As 2016 comes to a close, now is the perfect time to reflect on NACWA’s successes this year and set our sights on the work that must still be done in the New Year. Despite a tumultuous political season, NACWA members won hard-fought battles to promote sensible, affordable and innovative approaches to water quality protection […]

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Senate Comes Together on Water Infrastructure; Attention Turns to the House of Representatives

While Washington may have a well-deserved reputation for partisan gridlock, the U.S. Senate took a major step on September 15  towards showing that issues around water and water infrastructure can be overwhelming bipartisan when it passed S.2848, the Water Resources Development Act of 2016 (WRDA), with a thumping 95-3 vote. In an intense election season […]

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Balancing the Need for Investment with Low-income Customer Affordability

As communities across the nation address the ever-pressing need to maintain and update its water infrastructure, a larger question looms, ‘How do sewer and water utilities make these much-needed investments while being mindful about affordability, particularly as it relates to low-income customers?’  In short, how do utilities balance the staggering need for investment vs. low-income […]

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Building 21st Century Infrastructure for 21st Century Cities

The creation of modern water and wastewater systems was one of the most significant public health achievements of the 20th century. Drinking water treatment and systems brought safe, reliable drinking water to homes and businesses. Clean water systems eliminated deadly diseases such as cholera and typhoid and helped extend life expectancy in the U.S. by […]

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Could It Be? Stars Aligning for Potential Major CWA Improvements

Last week, I had the privilege of giving a federal policy update at the Texas Water conference in Ft. Worth.  As part of my presentation, I asked audience members to shout out the first word that came to mind when they thought about Washington, DC and Congress.  “Dysfunction,” “broken,” and “polarized” were among the favorites […]

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White House Water Summit Highlights Need for Innovation & Investment

On March 22 – World Water Day – the White House hosted an important Water Summit focused on building a sustainable water future for the United States.  Themes of innovation, resiliency, and sustainability played an important role in the day’s events, but there was also significant attention on the water infrastructure challenges facing communities around […]

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We Are All Dependent on Strong & Reliable Infrastructure

Two weeks ago, the Value of Water Coalition, of which NACWA is a member, released the findings of a national poll on public attitudes about water and it couldn’t be more timely. With the water crisis in Flint receiving substantial media attention across the nation, issues that are normally out of sight and out of mind […]

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Budget Leaves Us Disappointed

Last week, President Obama sent his last budget to Capitol Hill outlining his proposed priorities for federal spending as he leaves office, including spending on environmental priorities.  The budget document was released as Washington’s focus was transfixed on the on-going public health tragedy in Flint, Michigan related to lead contamination of its drinking water, and […]

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Big Data Environmentalism

“In God we trust. All others must bring data.”
That’s what American Statistician William Edwards Deming said more than 50 ago. He must have known what was coming.
Today, humans create 2.5 quintillion new bytes of data every single day. If each byte were a penny, that’s enough pennies to completely cover the surface of the Earth […]

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Key Clean Water Victories & Defeat of Great Lakes CSO Language

Overnight, Congressional negotiators reached final agreement on an omnibus FY 2016 federal spending package, and have encouraged its swift passage by both the House and the Senate. The bill includes a number of important priorities for the municipal clean water community, including robust funding levels for the Clean Water State Revolving Fund (CWSRF) and a […]

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