D.C. Conference Again Highlights Importance of Our United Effort through ‘ACWA East’

  • by Cathy Green
  • Mar 15, 2024
  • Voices on Water

ACWA’s presence in Washington D.C. counts among our association’s most valuable resources for member agencies. Bringing that fact home is ACWA’s annual D.C. Conference, where I recently joined more than 140 attendees for a three-day immersion into how, why, and where decisions on federal policy shape California’s water.

I am grateful to all who attended and participated in ACWA’s D.C. Conference. Additionally, my heartfelt appreciation goes to ACWA staff for organizing the conference, and to ACWA’s Federal Affairs Committee Chair Jolene Walsh, from Eastern Municipal Water District in Region 9, and Vice Chair Scott Peterson, from San Luis & Delta-Mendota Water Authority in Region 6, for moderating the Federal Advocacy 101 Panel and the Congressional Speech Program.

This year’s event featured policy experts and leaders within Washington D.C.’s water advocacy community, sharing insights into federal priorities, as well as how California water agencies can engage in their own federal advocacy. It also included a panel discussion on this year’s pivotal election, moderated by ACWA’s new Director of Federal Relations Ian Lyle. We heard keynote addresses from Acting Assistant Administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Water Bruno Pigott; U.S. Forest Service Associate Chief Angela Coleman; and Bureau of Reclamation (Reclamation) Commissioner Camille Calimlim Touton, who heads an arm of the federal government that plays a vital role in managing and funding California water infrastructure.

Reclamation has a substantial impact on California water through its operation of backbone infrastructure such as the Central Valley Project and reservoirs on the Colorado River. Reclamation is also a valuable federal partner that supplies planning and financial assistance for important projects, including the raise of B.F. Sisk Dam on San Luis Reservoir and restoration of capacity in essential conveyance facilities like the Friant-Kern Canal. The diligent federal advocates of ACWA East champion the cause of California’s water agencies in their work with officials at Reclamation, other federal agencies, and members of Congress. 

Overall, ACWA East’s advocacy is the finger ACWA keeps on the pulse of a myriad of issues affecting ACWA members. With billions of dollars in funding still available for Western water through the Inflation Reduction Act and Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, and critical issues such as PFAS liability, regulation of lead and copper service lines, low-income rate assistance, and many others before Congress and federal agencies, it’s easy to see how vital our work in D.C. is to the whole of California water management. We will continue to support our members in maximizing federal funding for water infrastructure and prioritizing local control for your agency to continue fulfilling its critical mission. 

Coming into my new role as ACWA President, I am keenly aware of the early origins of our association, founded as the Irrigation Districts Association of California. Today, we represent the interests of diverse types of public water suppliers in California. We are, and must always remain, united in advancing each other’s success in serving communities, farms, and businesses across the entire state. ACWA’s commitment to being the leading voice for California water, both agricultural and urban, is at the heart of our 30-plus-year presence in our nation’s capital, where ACWA East works on behalf of our membership on every major federal water issue affecting your future. We are proud to lead for you, the united, local water management community of California! .

Suggested Resources

15 RESOURCES prev next
Coalition Letter: Proposed Rule for Principles, Requirements and Guidelines for Water Resources

To: Acting Director for Policy and Legislation, Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Army Subject: Agency Proposed Rule for Specific […]

2024 Water Awareness Month Toolkit

Sorry, but only ACWA members have permission to view this content. Member login is required.

Priority Issues Bulletin

Sorry, but only ACWA members have permission to view this content. Member login is required.

Southern California Steelhead Status Review Submission to Commission

Agency: California Fish and Game Commission Subject: California Department of Fish and Wildlife Southern California Steelhead (Oncorhynchus mykiss) Status Review Submission […]

Regulatory Roundup

Sorry, but only ACWA members have permission to view this content. Member login is required.

Proposed Making Conservation a California Way of Life Regulation Comment Letter

Agency: State Water Resources Control Board Subject: Comment Letter – Proposed Making Conservation a California Way of Life Regulation Letter excerpt: […]

Quench Toolkit Spring 2024

ACWA is encouraging member agencies to utilize these resources to take advantage of ACWA’s QuenchCA campaign branding and provide broader […]

2023 Year In Review

ACWA’s “2023 Year in Review” outlines ACWA’s advocacy wins, awards and services provided to members, as well as events and […]

Groundwater Awareness Week 2024 Toolkit

ACWA encourages member agencies to participate in National Groundwater Awareness Week March 10-16 to raise the public’s awareness of groundwater […]

Dam Safety Fact Sheet

ACWA, along with the California Municipal Utilities Association and California Alliance for Jobs, has released a Dam Safety Fact Sheet, […]

Making Conservation a CA Way of Life Fact Sheet – January 2024

  ACWA’s Making Conservation a California Way of Life Fact Sheet provides a summary of the State Water Board’s draft regulatory […]

Comment Letter on Sacramento/Delta Draft Staff Report

Agency: State Water Resources Control Board Subject: Comment Letter – Sacramento/Delta Draft Staff Report Letter excerpt: The Association of California Water […]

Comments on Proposed Updates to the Drinking Water Cost Assessment Model

Agency: State Water Resources Control Board Subject: Proposed Updates to the Drinking Water Cost Assessment Model: Other Essential Infrastructure, Admin Needs, […]

Draft White Paper: Proposed Updates for the 2024 Drinking Water Needs Assessment

Agency: State Water Resources Control Board Subject: Draft White Paper Discussion On: Proposed Updates for the 2024 Drinking Water Needs Assessment […]

Division of Drinking Water Reporting Toolkit

Sorry, but only ACWA members have permission to view this content. Member login is required.

Suggested News

15 Articles prev next
Sutton Named GM at Glenn-Colusa Irrigation District

WILLOWS – Glenn-Colusa Irrigation District (GCID) named Jeff Sutton as its new General Manager, effective May 1. Sutton, an attorney, […]

April 19, 2024 ACWA News Available

Sorry, but only ACWA members have permission to view this content. Member login is required.

Local Control Remains Key to SGMA’s Success as Act Notches 10th Year

Signed into law during a severe drought, the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act turns 10 this year during a much wetter […]

Spotlight April 2024: Members Share Thoughts on SGMA at 10-Year Milestone

Aaron Fukuda keeps wondering when he’ll see Porsches and Ferraris driving past his office in rural Tulare County. But so […]

MWDOC Hosts Earth Day Event at Coronet Park

Since 1970, Americans have celebrated Earth Day, and over the past five decades, we’ve increased what we know about preserving […]

State Water Board Adopts Rulemaking for Chromium-6 MCL

The State Water Resources Control Board today adopted a new Maximum Contaminant Level (MCL) of 10 parts per billion (ppb) […]

Groups Release Video Supporting Voluntary Agreements

Today, the State Water Contractors and Northern California Water Association released a short, informative video about the Agreements to Support […]

JCSD Crowned as California’s Wastewater Collection System of the Year

The Jurupa Community Services District (JCSD) is proud to announce its award as the Wastewater Collection System of the Year […]

EBMUD Board Welcomes New Member

OAKLAND – The East Bay Municipal Utility District (EBMUD) welcomes a new board member to represent Lafayette, Alamo, Diablo, Danville, […]

9th Circuit Upholds SCV Water Judgement for Remediation of Groundwater Contamination

On April 15, 2024, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit affirmed a $68.5 million judgment for SCV […]

Orange County Water District Swiftly Responds to EPA PFAS Ruling

FOUNTAIN VALLEY – The Orange County Water District (OCWD) and its 19 retail water providers are intensifying their collaborative efforts […]

Sacramento-Area Water Providers Launch Summer Strong Yard Contest

Did you ditch the thirsty lawn, add vibrant low-water native plants, or install water-wise drip irrigation? Is your yard ready […]

April 2024 Priority Issues Update Now Available

The April 2024 Priority Issues Update is now available online to members. The update is a summary of the latest […]

EPA Announces National Regulation for PFAS

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has announced a new national maximum contaminant level (MCL) of 4.0 parts per trillion (ppt) […]

DSRSD Adopts New Energy Policy to Enhance Sustainability and Efficiency

DUBLIN – On February 20, 2024, the Dublin San Ramon Services District (DSRSD) Board of Directors unanimously adopted a new […]