Home\Latest News\House Natural Resources Committee Passes the Water Recycling Investment and Improvement Act of 2019

House Natural Resources Committee Passes the Water Recycling Investment and Improvement Act of 2019

Date: March 11, 2020

On March 11, the House Natural Resources Committee passed a number of water resources bills, including the Water Recycling Investment and Improvement Act of 2019 (H.R. 1162), which was introduced last year by Representative Grace Napolitano (D-CA).

The WateReuse Association thanks Representative Napolitano for her tireless advocacy in support of water recycling. We also thank Congressman Jared Huffman (D-CA), Chairman of the House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Water, Oceans, and Wildlife, for his co-sponsorship of the bill and for moving the legislation forward through Committee.

H.R. 1162 reauthorizes and increases the authorized funding level for the Bureau of Reclamation’s Title XVI-WIIN Water Reclamation and Reuse Program. Title XVI is the only federal program that is uniquely dedicated to supporting water recycling.

In addition to reauthorizing the program and increasing funding authority, the bill removes a requirement that projects be located in sustained drought or disaster areas, streamlines the program by removing a requirement that Congress approve each individual project after it has successfully competed for funding, and modernizes the individual project funding cap by raising it from $20 million to $30 million.

WateReuse has long supported this legislation and looks forward to its continued progression through the House of Representatives.

Alongside passage of H.R. 1162 today, the Natural Resources Committee also approved a number of other bills, including a revised version of the Desalination Development Act (H.R. 3723), which increases funding for desalination projects through the Bureau of Reclamation, as well as an amended version of the Securing Access for the Central Valley and Enhancing Water Resources Act (H.R. 2473), which increases funding for water recycling, technology development, and broader water infrastructure development.

It is not yet clear whether and when these bills will move to the House floor, though it is possible some of them will be incorporated into a larger legislative vehicle in the months ahead. We will provide additional details as the process progresses.

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