June 2019: WATER TAX DEFEATED!
State Leaders Agree Problem Should be Addressed in State Budget
For the past two years, Camrosa and other water agencies across the state have advocated hard against the proposed Water Tax. It seems that our collective efforts have finally paid off and that the State has found an alternative solution to the problem of providing safe and affordable drinking water to the few areas of the state without it. On Sunday, June 9, the State Legislature voted for a funding source via the state budget, rather than imposing a tax on ratepayers across the state. The money in the first year, capped at $130 million annually, will come primarily from the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund (GGRF) with additional funds from the State General Fund — which is enjoying a record $21 billion surplus and is certainly a more appropriate funding source than our ratepayers. After the first year, the funding will be 5% of the GGRF (with funding from the General Fund if there is a shortfall). The funding will sunset in 2030.
Budget trailer bill language will create a safe drinking water fund and provide the framework for the funding program.