Drinking Water Infrastructure Hamstrung With Antiquated Procurement Practices and Regulations That Inhibit Use of Materials & Increase Water Ratepayers Costs

Part 3 of 5 Antiquated Regulations Challenges to improved infrastructure and procurement practices are exacerbated by antiquated regulations that remain in place.  These antiquated regulations do not acknowledge new, innovative drinking water conveyance technologies.  Outdated regulations create regulatory ambiguity and complying with these old regulations contributes to project delays and increased costs to water ratepayers.…

Drinking Water Infrastructure Hamstrung With Antiquated Procurement Practices and Regulations That Inhibit Use of Materials & Increase Water Ratepayers Costs

Part 2 of 5 Antiquated Procurement Practices We have learned that there is growing bipartisan support in Congress to require state and local governments to maintain open and fair competition for materials used by public water systems when using federal financing programs.  According to some members working closely on the proposed infrastructure package Congress hopes…

White House and Congressional Leaders Reach Deal on FY 2020 & 2021 Budget

On August 2, President Trump signed into law a two-year federal budget deal totaling $2.7 trillion. Background The White House and congressional leaders announced on July 22 that a comprehensive deal had been worked out on the top line spending numbers for the U.S. discretionary budget for fiscal years 2020 and 2021. Pressure had been…

Drinking Water Infrastructure Hamstrung With Antiquated Procurement Practices and Regulations That Inhibit Use of Materials & Increase Water Ratepayers Costs

(Part 1 of 5) Introduction According to the American Society of Civil Engineers (@ASCETweets) 2017 Infrastructure Report Card, “Most Americans – just under 300 million people – receive their drinking water from one of the nation’s 51,356 community water systems. Of these, just 8,674 systems, or approximately 17%, serve close to 92% of the total…

California Members of U.S. House Introduce Legislation to Eradicate/Control Invasive Species Nutria

Would Provide California $7 Million Annually Through FY 2024 U.S. Representatives Josh Harder, John Garamendi, Jim Costa, and TJ Cox have introduced H.R. 3399, the reauthorization of the Nutria Eradication and Control Act in the U.S. House of Representatives to address the rising detections of the invasive species, nutria in California’s Central Valley. Nutria (Myocastor…

US House Appropriations Process Underway

U.S. House Appropriators continue to make progress on their twelve appropriations bills even without a congressional budget deal for FY 2020. Department of Interior and Environment The House Appropriations Committee has reported to the House the FY 2020 Interior and Environment Appropriations bill. The bill includes: A total $37.28 billion, an increase of $1.73 billion…

Congressional Budget Deal For FY 2020 Will Require Compromise

When Congress reconvenes after the Easter recess on April 29, job #1 will be to reach a deal on the top-dollar amount of federal discretionary spending for the federal government for FY 2020 beginning on October 1.  Discretionary spending is the portion of the federal budget totaling just over $1 trillion that Congress controls each…

Congress to Consider Supplemental Disaster Appropriations & EPA Nominee

On Tuesday afternoon, January 15 the U.S. House Rules Committee is scheduled to debate the rules for floor consideration of H.R 268, making Supplemental Appropriations for necessary expenses related to flood mitigation, disaster relief, long-term recovery, and restoration of infrastructure in areas that received a major disaster designation as a result of Hurricanes Florence, Michael,…

Analysis of EPA Waters of the U.S. Pre-Publication Proposal

On December 11, 2018, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Acting Administrator, Andrew Wheeler and R.D. James, Assistant Secretary of the Army for Civil Works, signed a “pre-publication” of a proposed rule on Waters of the U.S. (WOTUS). EPA will submit it to the Federal Register for publication. Publication will likely occur in a few weeks.…

GAO to EPA: Share Information on States Successes Identifying and Disclosing Lead Service Lines

A U.S. House of Representatives Committee report accompanying an appropriations bill for the FY 2017 Department of the Interior, Environment and Related Agencies includes a provision for the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to review lead service lines. EPA and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) agree that lead is harmful to health, especially…

Meetings of EPA NDWAC presents opportunities for companies and water systems to offer expert advice & ideas to federal government.

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently announced a meeting of the National Drinking Water Advisory Council (NDWAC) on December 6 & 7.   The NDWAC was established under the Safe Drinking Water Act of 1974. Congress created the NDWAC to provide advice, information, and recommendations on matters related to activities, functions, policies, and regulations of…

Impacts on Agriculture in U.S. – China Quest for Dominance in Artificial Intelligence (AI)

From the historical perspective the U.S. agriculture industry generally understands that it often bears the brunt of international trade disputes.  The current trade dispute imposed by the U.S. with multiple trading partners is no exception. However with farm income down 52%, the longevity of continued support from farm constituencies of this particular trade dispute is…

What Can Possibly Be Accomplished During 2018 Lame Duck Session of Congress?

Congress left many issues undone for the 16-days scheduled in the legislative calendar after the 2018 midterm elections, known as the lame duck session of Congress. Below are some of those remaining issues. FY 2019 Appropriations Bill Congress enacted 5 (of the total 12) annual FY 2019 appropriations bills prior to the beginning of the…

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