Happy Holidays
Giving Thanks
With the holiday season approaching, CASA staff has been reflecting on the past year, and while 2020 did not turn out quite the way we anticipated, we are left in awe of all our CASA members. The wastewater sector truly shined in a time of despair, from being deemed essential workers and continuing operations through a global pandemic, to finding new ways to protect public health by tracking the spread of the new Coronavirus through testing of influent wastewater. We are deeply thankful for you, our members, for your daily service and for simply being a great group of people. Happy Holidays to all!
Help us Welcome Alma Musvosvi to the CASA Family!
We are pleased to welcome new staff member Alma Musvosvi to the CASA family! Alma will serve as Legislative and Regulatory Analyst for the association, filling the vacancy created when Jared Voskuhl was promoted to Manager of Regulatory Affairs. In this position, Alma will support both the State Legislative and Regulatory Affairs programs and will be a key point of contact for CASA members on all legislative and regulatory issues. Before coming to CASA Alma completed a one-year fellowship program in the California State Assembly where she staffed a member of the Legislature on key legislative issues. She has dual degrees in biochemistry and health communication – a unique background that brings a fresh, valuable perspective to the CASA team. Help us give Alma a warm welcome and we look forward to all of you meeting her soon! Contact Alma at amusvosvi@casaweb.org.
Winter Conference 2021
Join us for CASA’s Virtual Winter Conference 2021, featuring an impressive line-up of speakers and the ability to connect with your peers, all while participating from the comfort of your home or office. You won’t want to miss this event, themed “Moving Forward”, and set for January 27-28, 2021. We are bringing back the ever popular small-group roundtable sessions, an agency finance focused panel, an incredible keynote speaker on the future of work, and a full suite of Committee Meetings, all live and interactive! Keep an eye out for registration to open soon and further details on the preliminary program to be released in the coming weeks. We hope to “see” you in January!

Send us your best pictures! We miss seeing you in person and are working to put something special together to feel connected at the Winter Conference…. We’re asking members to send us your favorite pictures from past CASA Conferences for a chance to be featured in a special project! Please send to Alyssa Downs.
Federal Update
Senate Appropriators Release FY2021 Spending Bills
The Senate Committee on Appropriations has released the text of its spending bills for fiscal year (FY) 2021. The 2021 fiscal year officially started on October 1, however, on October 1, Congress passed a continuing resolution (CR) to fund the federal government at current FY2020 spending levels through December 11 because House and Senate appropriators were able to pass FY2021 spending bills. Upon the committee’s release, Chairman Richard Shelby (R-AL) noted that the bills will not be marked up, but rather serve as a basis for negotiations with the House in the coming weeks during the Lame Duck Session that kicked off on November 16. The House passed their spending bills earlier this year. The House and Senate have just weeks to reach agreements on spending levels and pass either a massive omnibus spending bill (packaging together all twelve FY2021 spending bills) by December 11, or resort to passing another CR to avoid a government shutdown on December 12 when the current CR expires. At the time of this writing, the White House is signaling that they are open to passing an omnibus bill.

The Senate Committee on Appropriations’ report for the Interior-Environment spending bill, responsible for funding the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s water infrastructure programs, can be accessed here. The committee report for the Energy-Water Development spending bill, that funds the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, can be accessed here.
House Democrats to Pursue PFAS Action In 117th Congress
Representative Debbie Dingell (D-MI) has announced that she and her Democrat colleagues in the House will try again to pass comprehensive legislation addressing PFAS contamination and treatment next year and that the issue will be “a top priority” in the 117th Congress. Dingell explained that she and Committee on Energy and Commerce Chairman Frank Pallone (D-NJ) have been reviewing the possibility of reintroducing the PFAS Action Act of 2019 (H.R. 535), which passed the House this year, but was never acted upon in the Senate. H.R. 535 is a broad package that includes numerous provisions targeting contamination, monitoring, treatment, and efforts to phase out PFAS chemicals in products ranging from cookware to firefighting foam to water supplies. If enacted into law, the package would also mandate that PFOA and PFOS be designated as hazardous substances under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA), and provide for the opportunity for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) to determine whether to designate and regulate the entire class of PFAS chemicals as hazardous under CERCLA. If USEPA designates the entire class of PFAS as hazardous under CERCLA, it could potentially adversely impact agencies’ ability to land apply biosolids, barring any specific exemptions.
Regulatory Update
Proposed COVID-19 Emergency Regulation
Cal OSHA is advancing emergency regulations to address COVID-19 in the workplace including at public agencies, such as wastewater treatment plants. The rules were unanimously approved by the Cal OSHA Standards Board on November 19th and now go to the Office of Administrative Law (OAL) for final approval. OAL has 10 days to act on them and have a 5 day public comment period. The rules are attached with some highlighted notes provided by LACSD. These rules are anticipated to take effect on or about December 1st. For further information, please go to https://www.dir.ca.gov/OSHSB/COVID-19-Prevention-Emergency.html.
Creative Corner
Let’s Talk FOG
It’s no secret that this time of the year often leads to a large uptick in fat, oil, and grease (FOG) related clogs. This holiday season don’t be afraid to get creative on your social media sites to encourage customers to properly dispose of their FOG! Click on these agencys' posts for inspiration:
Member News
VVWRA and Anaergia Partner to Construct Renewable Energy Facility 
The Victor Valley Wastewater Reclamation Authority (VVWRA) and Anaergia Services have partnered with investing firm North Sky Capital to begin construction of a renewable natural gas facility at VVWRA in San Bernardino County. “The Public Private Partnership (P3) involving VVWRA, Anaergia and North Sky demonstrates a replicable model to meet California organic waste recycling mandates and improve wastewater infrastructure resiliency: retrofitting anaerobic digestion infrastructure to convert organic waste and sludge into pipeline quality renewable natural gas.” Read more here.
EMWD Virtual State of the District
On November 19, the Eastern Municipal Water District (EMWD) hosted its virtual State of the District event to provide key stakeholders and customers with information on how EMWD is working toward a more resilient future. EMWD’s Board of Directors and General Manager Paul Jones shared information about major projects and initiatives that will help shape the future of the organization, which currently serves nearly 1 million people across western Riverside County. Among the programs and projects highlighted were EMWD’s Perris II Desalination Facility, its Mountain Avenue West Groundwater Replenishment Facility, the Perris North Groundwater Program, EMWD’s recycled water partnerships, and its wastewater services. The event was hosted on EMWD’s social media channels and on its website. For more information, please view the video here.
YLWD Unveils New Generator for Back-Up Power
On Saturday, November 21, the Yorba Linda Water District (YLWD) held a ribbon cutting ceremony in celebration of their new natural gas-powered electricity generator. The generator was installed to provide back-up power in the event of power loss from wildfires, Public Safety Power Shutoffs, and other emergencies. “The people of Yorba Linda are no strangers to wildfires. The 2008 Freeway Complex fire awakened YLWD to the devastation that the community will face when water cannot be delivered to areas engulfed in flames. YLWD set out on a mission to harden essential water infrastructure and make it more resistant to fires. Over the last 12 years, YLWD has installed additional power sources, moved essential equipment, maintained vegetation, and so much more.” Congratulations to YLWD!
In Case You Missed It
Change in the Clean Water State Revolving Fund 2020-21 Intended Use Plan Cutoff Score
We are pleased to share the following from the State Water Resources Control Board:
At its June 16, 2020 meeting, the State Water Board adopted the Clean Water State Revolving Fund (CWSRF) 2020-21 Intended Use Plan (IUP). The Board established the Cutoff Score at 14 to add new projects to this year’s Fundable List but gave the Deputy Director of the Division of Financial Assistance (DFA) the option to lower the Cutoff Score to 13. Based on staff’s analysis of DFA’s progress to date and assessment of funding all of the projects on 2020-21 Fundable List by June 30, 2021, the Deputy Director of DFA has lowered the Cutoff Score to 13.  
This adds 18 scored project applications to the CWSRF 2020-21 Fundable List. DFA’s goal is to execute financing agreements for all projects on the Fundable List by June 30, 2021. Projects on the Fundable List that are not financed by the end of the state fiscal year will be carried over to the next year’s Fundable List unless directed otherwise by the State Water Board or an applicant withdraws its application. More information can be found in the announcement on the CWSRF website.
EPA Invites CA, IA, RI to Apply for $695 Million in Water Infrastructure Loans
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is inviting three state agencies to apply for a total of $695 million in Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA) loans through EPA’s new state infrastructure financing authority WIFIA (SWIFIA) program. This funding will help states finance infrastructure projects to improve water quality and protect public health in communities across the United States. For this round, California, Iowa, and Rhode Island are invited to apply for funding. “The SWIFIA program will help finance over $3.2 billion in water infrastructure investments across the states of California, Iowa, and Rhode Island, while creating more than 2,000 jobs,” said EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler. “It’s another example of the Trump Administration’s commitment to building clean water infrastructure across the country.” Read more in the press release.
Join us as we continue our COVID-19 webinar series on December 15, 2020 at 10:30 am. For the last eight months, CASA and CWEA have hosted a series of joint webinars focusing primarily on COVID-19 related issues. We will continue that series through the end of the year, focusing on wastewater based epidemiology developments and other relevant COVID-19 research and initiatives.
Jan. 27-28, 2021
CASA Winter Conference 2021