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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

July 15, 2009 Press Release

(Washington D.C.)- Rep. Grace F. Napolitano welcomed news of the Department of the Interior’s investment of $132,334,693 in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funds in 26 water recycling and desalination projects throughout California. Several local water projects will receive a portion of the funds, including water recycling plants in Industry, the Inland Empire, and the San Gabriel Valley.

March 24, 2009 Press Release
(Washington, DC) On March 24th, Rep. Napolitano was given an Award of Merit by the American Water Works Association (AWWA).
The award is given to “recognize achievement of those outside the water profession who have demonstrated outstanding service in support of the principles of AWWA in providing better water for people.”
January 28, 2009 Press Release
(Washington, DC) Rep. Grace F. Napolitano (CA-38) was re-appointed Chair of the House Water & Power Subcommittee. She is also the sixth ranking Democrat on the House Natural Resources Committee.
January 21, 2009 Press Release
Rep. Grace F. Napolitano (CA-38) issued the following statement on Secretary Ken Salazar’s confirmation by a voice vote in the Senate:
December 1, 2008 Press Release
June 4, 2008 Press Release
NORWALK, CA – Rep. Grace F. Napolitano (CA-38) spoke on the passing of former Bureau of Reclamation Commissioner John Keys following his death in a plane crash last Friday.
April 29, 2008 Press Release

(Washington D.C.) - Congress passed S. 2739 today, a bill that includes Rep. Grace F. Napolitano’s (D-Norwalk) dam site security bill, H.R. 1662. This bill caps how much water and power customers pay for the cost of security guards at Bureau of Reclamation dams. The Bureau has maintained heightened security at dams since September 11, 2001 and the measure would cap how much customers have to pay for such security at $18.9 million.

January 28, 2008 Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC – The House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Water and Power, Chaired by Congresswoman Grace F. Napolitano (D-Norwalk), will hold a hearing on January 29, 2008 in Washington, DC on the federal and state role in addressing the uncertainty of California water supplies.