Matheson: Long-Overdue Water Funding Bill Headed to the President
Congressman Matheson said funding for water planning and infrastructure projects in Utah-long overdue and badly needed-is included in the Water Resources Development Act (HR 1495) now headed to the President's desk.
Differences in both the House and Senate versions of WRDA have been worked out and the agreed-to measure is scheduled for passage in the House Wednesday.
Matheson included more than $10 million in the legislation for critical water projects in Grand, Washington, Iron, Duchesne and Uintah counties.
"The long-running drought, combined with outmoded water systems, is straining the counties' ability to provide clean, reliable water to their communities. This funding will help them make long-awaited improvements to water delivery in order to protect human health and the environment," said Matheson.
Matheson said WRDA prioritizes water project funding, making it highly likely that the counties will be helped in 2008. He said WRDA authorizes an aquifer study for Grand County that will, among other things, help determine the extent of pollution from the Atlas tailings site. Preliminary studies indicate the contamination has migrated under the river towards the town of Moab. He said the legislation authorizes the Army Corps of Engineers to study how it can reduce future flood damage along the Santa Clara River in southwestern Utah. Finally, Matheson said more than $10 million is included for "rural water infrastructure" for Iron, Uintah and Duchesne counties.