LINDER TESTIFIES BEFORE THE HOUSE TRANSPORTATION AND INFRASTRUCTURE COMMITTEE ON "21ST CENTURY WATER COMMISSION ACT OF 2007"
Washington, D.C. - Representative John Linder (GA-07) testified today before the House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee on Water Resources and Environment. The focus of Linder's testimony was his bill, H.R. 135, the "21st Century Water Commission Act of 2007." Linder began his testimony by addressing the concerns of some on the Committee that his bill would somehow infringe upon states' water rights.
"First, I want to hasten to assure my friends from Michigan that the only thing worse than a national water policy is a global water policy. This is not to establish a national policy for use of water, but to get people around the same table to bring all of the knowledge we have about water to the same place to advise the Congress and the President."
Linder explained that there are new ideas all across this country, and the world, that are making their way into the water discussion, and an effort needs to be made to bring them to the same table. The Water Commission will focus on storage, water conservation, and repairing the leaky pipes that contribute to so much unnecessary water loss. Linder noted that Philadelphia alone loses 85 million gallons of water a day through leaky pipes.
"We need to increase the revolving loan fund under the Clean Water Act so that more states can fix their problems. In Atlanta, we're fixing a $3 billion problem with our sewage treatment. We ought to be able to borrow that money at low interest rates from the Federal government under the Clean Water Act."
Linder finished his testimony by reiterating to the Committee that the intention of the Water Commission is not to establish a national water policy. Rather, he concluded, the Commission's true intention is to establish exactly what we know about water and what we know works across the country, and then to bring that information to the President and Congress so it can be looked at, and then decide how to help improve our nation's water needs.
"This was started by looking at how we got our interstate highway system established. It was started in 1938 by FDR with a commission to bring all of the knowledge and engineers to the same table. In 3 years they came up with a proposal. That proposal took 70 years to enact and get completed, but it got completed, and individual states controlled what went on in their states with their development. That is exactly how I see this happening."