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Home>Topics>>WaterWorld Weekly - April 15, 2013

WaterWorld Weekly - April 15, 2013

Fri, 12 Apr 2013|

EPA FY14 budget request; Water leaders in DC to support WIFIA; Water operator pleads guilty in contamination case; Seattle expands water bill payment assistance; Partnership focuses on improving water, sanitation in Indian Country



[MUSIC] Hi, I'm Angela Godwin for WaterWorld Magazine bringing you this week's water and waste water news headlines. Coming up, EPA budget request sent to Congress. Water leaders convene in Washington to support WIFIA. Water operator pleads guilty for role in contamination case. Seattle expands water bill payment assistance. Partnership focuses on improving water and sanitation Indian Country. President Obama sent his fiscal year 2014 EPA budget request to congress last week. Some good news and bad news for drinking water and waste water. A total of 1.9 billion has been requested for the state. Revolving fund programs. Just over a billion dollars for waste water and $817 million for drinking water. That's a reduction of about $472 million, compared to last year's total SRF budget. Some water programs did see a boost. Wetlands protection programs are budgeted for 27.6. 7 million, an increase of 6.5 million over last year. Drinking water programs would get 117.7 million, a 5.4 million bump. Surface water protection is budgeted at 213.3 million, a $9.4 million increase. The Great Lakes Restoration Initiative would get 300 million, a slight increase 0.5 million. And the Chesapeake Bay program is budgeted at $73,000,000. That's $15,700,000 over last year's budget. For more information on the EPA budget request, visit epa.gov/planandbudget/upy2014. More than 170 water utility leaders from 47 states will descend upon Capital Hill this week to voice support for legislation that will create a water infrastructure finance and innovation authority or WIFIA. The delegates are part of the Water Matters Fly-in. An innovate sponsored by the American Water Works Association and the Water Environment Federation. In addition to supporting WIFIA. Utility leaders will advocate for the protection of water infrastructure bonds and the affordability of federal water mandates. WIFIA would complement existing state revolving loan fund programs by making low interest federal loans available for large water and wastewater infrastructure projects. [SOUND] A former water operator in Crestwood, Illinois, pleaded guilty last week for his role in a scandal that put the health of an entire town at risk. Frank Scaccia admitted to making false statements regarding the source of Crestwood's drinking water. It supposedly came. Exclusively from Lake Michigan, but in fact, for the past 20 years, that pricey water was supplemented with water from a community well known to be contaminated with cancer-causing dry cleaning chemicals. [UNKNOWN] and other town officials allegedly falsified records and lied to regulators in order to save money. Nearly $400,000 that would have otherwise been spent fixing leaky water mains. Scaccia faces two years in prison and a $250,000 fine. He maintains that he was just following directives. [SOUND] Seattle City Council last week unanimously adopted legislation expanding emergency bill payment assistance to prevent water shut offs in low income households with children. The No Child Without Water legislation inflation provides an emergency assistance credit twice every 12 months for qualifying households containing a minor. The subsidy is estimated to cost 26 thousand dollars this year, and will allow low income households with minor children to avoid water shutoffs. [SOUND] USDA assigned a memorandum of understanding with a number of federal partners including EPA. The Department of Housing and Urban Development, The Department of Health and Human Services, The Indian Health Service, and the Department of Interior. To continue working together to reduce by 50% the number of tribal homes lacking access to safe water and basic sanitation. By 2015. Approximately 12% of American, Indian and Alaska Native homes do not have safe water or sanitation facilities. The Seminole renews efforts by federal agencies to address these issues and fulfill commitments United States made in support of United Nations Millennium Development Goals. The MOU replaces two previous MOUs and will remain in effect for the next eight years. [SOUND] For WaterWorld Magazine, I'm Angela Godwin. Thanks for watching. [MUSIC]

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