May 20, 2011

Democratic Senators Press CEQ on Revised P&G

In a letter to Nancy Sutley, Chairwoman of the Council on Environmental Quality, Senators highlight the role ecosystem benefits should play in the revised Principles and Guidelines her agency is developing.  

Senate Subcommittee Holds Hearing on Hoover Power Bill

On May 20, the Senate Water and Power subcommittee, chaired by Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH)  held a hearing on S. 519, the Hoover power Allocation Act of 2011.  Testifying on the legislation was Mr. Derrick Moe, Regional Manager of the Desert Southwest Region, Western Area Power Administration, U.S. Department of Energy.

House Postpones Chemical Security Markup

The House Energy and Commerce Committee was scheduled to markup HR 908, an extension of the Department of Homeland Security’s CFATS program, on May 11. 

However, the markup was postponed when debate on a health care measure ran longer than predicted.  As currently drafted water security provisions are not included in HR 908; however, amendments on water security are likely to be debated when the bill is considered by the Committee.  A markup could occur as early as the week of May 23.

Interior and Ag Departments Award Funds for Water Use Efficiency Projects

The Department of Interior and the Department of Agriculture are working together to leverage funding for water agencies and agriculture producers in California’s Central Valley. 

Reclamation Stakeholders Meeting Held

On May 20, Commissioner Michael Connor held a stakeholders meeting in Washington, DC to update participants on budget and policy items. 

First up on the agenda was the introduction of Lori Caramanian as the new Deputy Assistant Secretary for Water and Science within Interior.  Next Connor outlined the Bureau’s Fiscal Year 2011 Operating Plan based on the recently passed continuing resolution, an update on the SECURE Water Act Climate Change report, and highlighted the America’s Great Outdoors Activities initiative.

Lori Caramanian appointed as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Water and Science

The Department of Interior announced the new appointment of Lori Caramanian as the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Water and Science.

Ms. Caramanian is one of two deputies to the Assistant Secretary for Water and Science, which oversees USGS and the Bureau of Reclamation. Prior to her appointment, she served as Counselor to the Assistant Secretary focusing on hydropower projects, Colorado River Issues and Gulf of Mexico hypoxia concerns.

Water Infrastructure Network Meets

The Water Infrastructure Network, of which ACWA is a member, met today to discuss prospects for a SRF reauthorization bill and FY 2012 appropriations. 

Army Corps and Bureau of Reclamation Represented at ACWA’s Federal Issues Forum

Colonel William Leady, Commander of the South Pacific Division of the US Army Corps of Engineers, Donald Glaser, Mid-Pacific Regional Director, and Lorri Gray-Lee, Lower Colorado Regional Director for the Bureau of Reclamation addressed ACWA members at the Federal Issues Forum on Thursday, May 12 at the ACWA Spring Conference.

ACWA Federal Affairs Committee Meets – Forms CWA Guidance Workgroup

The ACWA Federal Affairs Committee met last week at the ACWA Spring Conference. During the meeting the committee took positions on several new bills for the 112th Congress. The committee was also updated on the Obama Administration’s regulatory efforts, including a draft Clean Water Act Guidance document that expands EPA’s Clean Water Act jurisdiction.  The committee formed a work group to draft comments which are due on July 1.