Gov. Brown, Legislative Leaders Reach Budget Agreement by Kanisha Golden Jun 8, 2018 Budget Conference Committee Does Not Adopt Proposed Tax on Drinking Water Gov. Jerry Brown and legislative leaders today announced that they have reached an agreement on the 2018-’19 state budget. This evening, the Budget Conference Committee voted to approve a package on safe drinking water funding that did not adopt the Administration’s drinking water budget proposal and the water tax budget trailer bill. The Conference Committee approved a package that: Sets aside $23.5 million in General Fund revenue for allocation to safe drinking water actions later in this legislative session; Provides $5 million in General Fund revenue for the State Water Resources Control Board to provide lead testing remediation and technical assistance for child care centers. ACWA and everyone involved in this funding issue all have the same goal of ensuring that Californians have safe drinking water. ACWA is pleased that the Legislature recognized that there are funding alternatives to a water tax. ACWA is extremely thankful for the engagement of the many ACWA member agencies that testified in opposition to a tax on drinking water during budget subcommittee hearings, joined ACWA’s coalition and sent letters to legislators. Next Steps Although the Budget Conference Committee action did not adopt the statewide water tax budget trailer bill, the proponents of the water tax may still try to advance the water tax later this summer through SB 623 (Monning). ACWA will keep members apprised of developments in this area. Questions For questions regarding the budget trailer bill, SB 623 or ACWA’s advocacy efforts, please contact ACWA Deputy Executive Director for Government Relations Cindy Tuck or ACWA Director of State Legislative Relations Wendy Ridderbusch. Both can be reached at (916) 441-4545.