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Rep. Grace F. Napolitano is a strong advocate for securing clean, inexpensive water supply that we can rely on even in times of drought. She has fought for increased water recycling, improved water conservation, and environmental protections for our natural sources of drinking water.

Napolitano has recently coauthored two bipartisan bills to assist with the Los Angeles County Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) permit from the State Regional Water Quality Control Board:

1. H.R. 2355, the Water Infrastructure Flexibility Act, would provide regulatory flexibility and affordability assistance to cities with the implementation of Clean Water Act permits. It is supported by the U.S. Conference of Mayors, the National League of Cities, and the National Association of Counties.

2. H.R. 2510, the Water Quality and Job Creation Act, provides funds to support cities in implementing the LA County MS4 permit, as well as improve water supply infrastructure to manage future droughts.  The bill provides $4.85 billion in EPA grants and $20 billion in EPA loans for cities and local agencies to construct storm water projects, water recycling and reuse projects, groundwater recharge projects, and water pollution control projects.

In 2010, Napolitano introduced H.R. 4349, the Hoover Dam Power Allocation Act, which would authorize the Hoover Dam to continue operating for another 60 years and give Native American tribes and other groups new access to its power. The Hoover Dam provides electricity for 29 million people, and Lake Mead, the body of water behind the dam, is a critical source of water for millions of Californians. President Obama signed the legislative language into law on Dec. 20, 2011.

Napolitano has been a long-time champion for cleaning up local groundwater and making it safe to drink. She has helped secure more than $80 million in federal funds for the San Gabriel Basin Restoration Fund, which pumps water out of the ground at several San Gabriel Valley Facilities and removes chemical contaminants potentially hazardous to human health.

Since 1999, Napolitano has worked to ensure the removal of a dangerous, 16 million-ton mass of uranium waste near the Colorado River in the town of Moab, Utah. This heap of uranium waste was leeching into the river and posed a health threat to the 38 million people in California, Nevada, Arizona, and other western states who get their water from the Colorado River. Napolitano supported increased clean-up funding which was included in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, and to date 4.5 million tons have been safely disposed of, with cleanup estimated to be finished in 2019.

Napolitano has also opposed efforts to weaken clean water regulations. In 2011, she opposed H.R. 2018, the Clean Water Cooperative Federalism Act, which would have lowered national clean water standards. She believes environmental water regulations that protect human health should remain strong and our drinking water must be kept free from contamination. 

Napolitano is a member and former top Democrat on the House Committee on Natural Resources’ Subcommittee on Water, Power, and Oceans. She has served on the Natural Resources Committee throughout her tenure in Congress.

More on Water

June 27, 2011 Press Release

(Washington, DC) Today, Rep. Grace F. Napolitano called on House Republicans to abandon H.R. 1837, the San Joaquin Water Reliability Act. H.R. 1837 has sustained a barrage of criticism in recent weeks from editorial boards and concerned citizens across California as a “big gulp” effort to usurp state water laws, roll back environmental protections, and alter water delivery to favor certain agricultural users.

June 15, 2011 Press Release

(Washington, DC) Today, HR 470, the Hoover Power Allocation Act of 2011, with bipartisan support from Rep. Grace F. Napolitano and Rep. Joe Heck, was reported favorably out of the Committee on Natural Resources and moved closer to receiving a vote in the House of Representatives. The bill reauthorizes the Hoover Dam through the next fifty years and sets aside 5 percent of its power for use by new entities, including Native American tribes.

June 13, 2011 Press Release

(Washington, DC) Today, a Water and Power Subcommittee hearing called by Rep. Grace F. Napolitano exposed critical flaws in HR 1837, the San Joaquin Valley Water Reliability Act, a radical Republican water bill which would usurp California’s water laws, roll back California’s environmental protections, overturn California’s water rights system to the benefit of a few powerful agricultural users, and set precedent for litigation against other states’ water rights.

June 2, 2011 Press Release

(Washington, DC) Today, the House Subcommittee on Water and Power held a hearing on H.R. 1837, the San Joaquin Valley Water Reliability Act, which would usurp California’s water laws, roll back California’s environmental protections, and alter water distribution to favor certain agricultural users.

March 15, 2011 Press Release

(Washington D.C.)- Today at a hearing for the Subcommittee on Water and Power, Rep. Grace F. Napolitano supported funding requests from the country’s four Power Marketing Administrations and welcomed new efforts to bring additional energy from wind power to California from Washington and Oregon.

February 16, 2011 Press Release

(Washington D.C.)- Today, Rep. Grace F. Napolitano made the following statement on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives in response to the cuts to water programs proposed in the Republican continuing resolution for fiscal year 2011:

 “The Continuing Resolution risks the water supply of over 30 million  people, exposes our groundwater resources to contamination the size of Connecticut and undermines local, state and federal collaborative solutions such as California’s Bay Delta Conservation Plan and the Title XVI water recycling program.

February 14, 2011 Press Release

(Washington D.C.)- Today, Rep. Grace F. Napolitano announced her committee appointments for the 112th Congress.

December 1, 2010 Press Release

(Washington D.C.)- Yesterday, Rep. Grace F. Napolitano voted in favor of H.R. 4783, the Claims Resolution Act of 2010, which passed the House of Representatives with provisions establishing the federal government’s obligation to make drinking water available to Native American tribes and pueblos.

September 28, 2010 Press Release

(Washington D.C.)- Today, the House of Representatives passed a resolution authored by Rep. Grace F. Napolitano commemorating the 75th anniversary of the dedication of the Hoover Dam.

July 22, 2010 Press Release

(Washington D.C.)- Yesterday, the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee agreed to the Hoover Power Allocation Act of 2010 (H.R. 4349) and reported it favorably out of committee. Rep. Grace F. Napolitano authored the legislation, which establishes how the dam’s electricity will be distributed until 2067.