FRWA eNews
August 7, 2020
Florida Rural Water Association
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Tallahassee FL 32309
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NRWA Backs
Emergency Assistance for Rural Water Systems Act
Congressmen David Rouzer of North Carolina (NC-07) and Filemón Vela Jr. of Texas (TX-34) introduced the Emergency Assistance for Rural Water Systems Act today.

The Emergency Assistance for Rural Water Systems Act allows USDA Rural Development to provide affordable and sustainable financial options for rural utilities impacted by COVID-19. Assistance includes grants, zero percent loans, one percent loans, principal and interest reduction, loan modifications and direct operational assistance to provide financial stability for the impacted utility to get through this crisis. 

NRWA strongly supports these tools for Rural Development to employ in this crisis. NRWA's 30,000 member utilities need these tools and resources to directly address the financial concerns and continuity of operations challenges that the rural utilities are currently experiencing, especially as they continue to provide uninterrupted essential services now and in future disasters or economic downturns.

"Access to clean drinking water and safe wastewater treatment is vital every American, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic," stated Kent Watson, NRWA President and Texas National Director. "Serving as a manager of a rural utility for 30 years, I understand the necessity of the Emergency Assistance for Rural Utilities Act. This Act will provide assistance that is direly needed by many utilities in our Nation that are suffering the financial effects of the pandemic and will ensure future sustainability for these systems during times of crisis."

This legislation comes at a time that is desperately needed for Rural America and Rural Water. Small and rural communities have done their part to meet the public's needs during the COVID-19 pandemic by maintaining and restoring customer access to water services regardless of payment. NRWA estimates small water and wastewater systems stand to lose $998 million in revenue due to customer nonpayment alone. This lost revenue will never be recovered by utilities and does not include emergency operational costs. more
National News
Maine Investigating Very Startling Levels of PFAS on Dairy Farm State officials declined to identify the farm, but said Maine's milk supply remains safe because the farm was sending a relatively small amount of milk to a processor that was blending it with milk from other farms.  more

Alabama's PFAS Settlement with 3M Company Includes Long-term Obligations to Investigate and Clean up PFAS Throughout the State  Consent decree with the EPA, state will cover PFAS research, removal at work sites and Tennessee River. more

Mayors Decry lack of New Funding for Cities in U.S. Senate Republican COVID Relief Bill  Mayors of U.S. cities on Tuesday blasted a $1 trillion Senate Republican coronavirus relief bill for not addressing the needs of cities, which are crippled by "drastically dwindling resources" as coronavirus cases spike in parts of the nation.  more
State News
EPA grants third loan to Miami-Dade water district | Florida Politics  One of South Florida's most pressing problems is getting some attention.  more

Water district recommends smaller draw for Nestle | Ocala Star Banner  Nestle Waters should be allowed to get more water out of the Ginnie Springs system but not as much as it wants, according to a recommendation by the Suwannee River Water Management District.  more

Ormond Beach to replace sewer pipes after break | Ormond Beach Observer  The city of Ormond Beach will begin replacing 105 feet of wastewater pipes near the intersection of Granada Boulevard and Clyde Morris Boulevard this weekend, following a sewer break on July 29.  more 

City of Palm Bay Utilities Department Accepting Participants in 2020 Lead and Copper Testing | Space Coast Daily  While PBUD service lines do not contain lead or copper, the plumbing materials used in some homes can slowly leach metals into water through corrosion.  more

Tropical Storm Isaias went easy on Brevard County beaches | Florida Today  Tropical Storm Isaias proved a good dry run for Brevard County's newly rebuilt coastline, stealing hardly any sand, barely denting the beach, and mostly just lapping up more of that stringy brown seaweed.  more

Florida / USVI State Director Phil Leary announces funding to assist rural Floridians  Trump Administration Invests More Than $10.6 Million to Modernize Water and Wastewater Infrastructure in Rural Florida.  more

Oysterman reflects on moratorium of Apalachicola Bay oyster fishery | Apalachicola Times  As a fourth generation oysterman, typical young boy memories of sleepovers with friends and the uncanny wits of popular cartoons barely ever sweep ashore any of his adult conversations.  more
This Week in Water History
1996 Amendments to the Safe Drinking Water Act Become Law

August 6, 1996: The 1996 amendments to the Safe Drinking Water Act became law. "In 1996, Congress amended the Safe Drinking Water Act to emphasize sound science and risk-based standard setting, small water supply system flexibility and technical assistance, community-empowered source water assessment and protection, public right-to-know, and water system infrastructure assistance through a multi-billion-dollar state revolving loan fund. The amendments were signed into law by President Bill Clinton on August 6, 1996.

Main points of the 1996 amendments:  more

For more articles on what went on this week in water history, click here.
Florida Rural Water Association | |
2970 Wellington Circle
Tallahassee FL 32309