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Home > News > News Articles > 2019 > March > Trailer Budget Bill Proposes Statewide Tax on Drinking Water
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Trailer Budget Bill Proposes Statewide Tax on Drinking Water

March 25, 2019
The League joins the Association of California Water Agencies (ACWA) and a large coalition of nearly 200 local water and public agencies to oppose the proposed water tax unless amended with an alternative funding source.
 
The budget trailer bill language, based on SB 623 (Monning, 2017), is intended to establish a stable funding mechanism administered by the State Water Resources Control Board to assist those who do not have access to safe drinking water. This bill is a slightly modified version of Gov. Jerry Brown’s 2018 proposed trailer bill, which was ultimately rejected.
 
The 2019 trailer bill proposes agricultural assessments to address nitrate-related contamination and a tax on drinking water (tap water) that would require approximately 3,000 local water systems to assess on local residents and businesses.
 
Since 2017, the League has been supportive of the establishment of a safe and clean drinking water fund, but has been advocating for the removal of any tax on tap water as a funding source. This year, the ACWA and the California Municipal Utilities Association (CMUA) are sponsoring SB 669 (Caballero), which would create the Safe Drinking Water Trust in the State Treasury to fund a Safe Drinking Water Fund at the State Water Board.
 
Lack of access to safe drinking water in certain disadvantaged communities is a public health issue that the state needs to address. The League will continue to be supportive of ACWA and CMUA’s proposal to remove the tax on water from any legislation and is evaluating other related safe drinking water fund legislation.
 
For questions or additional information, please contact League Legislative Representative Derek Dolfie.


 
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