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Saturday, March 6, 2010

Update - Working for Clean Water Bill

Update - The Working for Clean Water Bill

As our State Legislators and Senators are winding down their 2010 session, they are grappling with many important issues for the Budget, but one issue stands out as the central environmental effort this year. That is the Clean Water Bill SHB 3181.

It has thus far gone through several iterations. Supporters of the Clean Water Bill have now proposed a new version, because the House Finance Committee has unfortunately, altered the original in such a way to make it ineffective in raising enough funding to make a difference.

Puget Sound and our other important waterways MUST be cleaned up to support our way of life here in the Northwest AND provide the water quality necessary to sustain life for wildlife and people. The new version would provide a .85% increase in the Hazardous Substance Tax for clean water. This Bill will make a difference by addressing our stormwater runoff problems and provide the funding needed by our local cities and towns to fix these problems.

The Bill is supported by the 2010 Environmental Priorities Coalition which includes, People for Puget Sound, Seattle Audabon, Washington Conservation Voters, Sierra Club- Cascade Chapter, Washington Toxic Coaltion, labor groups, Association of Washington Cities (AWC) and many others.

Key Points about the New Proposal:

· Generates $100 million a year (.85% increase in the Hazardous Substance Tax) for stormwater and other essential clean water programs.

· This bill is a significant job creator – building new clean water infrastructure and putting Washingtonians to work.

· The new proposal has broad support from the continuing coalition of environmental organizations, labor, cities, and counties. It is also strongly supported by commercial fisherman and shellfish growers.

Can you please call you legislators and senators and tell them it is vitally important to your community to address these problems and this Working for Clean Water Bill will make that possible? It's quite easy to call the legislative hotline and leave a message. Your representatives really WANT to hear from you, their constituents.

Just call the legislative hotline at 1-800-562-6000.

Sample Message: "My name is ______ and I live in (name of your town) and I urge you to support a .85% increase in the Hazardous Substance Tax to generate $100 million for stormwater pollution cleanup."

Thanks! It makes a difference!


Photo Credit - Janet Way

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