Legislation will free up billions of dollars to improve water infrastructure in U.S.
American Water officials have announced support for the bipartisan and bicameral Sustainable Water Infrastructure Investment Act of 2011. The bill will remove state volume caps on private activity bonds for water and wastewater projects, freeing up billions of private capital dollars for investment in the nation’s water infrastructure.
"This bi-partisan legislation will play a key role in enabling investment in our nation’s water infrastructure,” said American Water Works Co. Inc. President and CEO Jeff Sterba. “Public-private partnerships are an essential part of the solution and this legislation will go a long way towards making more such partnerships a reality.”
According to Environmental Protection Agency and Government Accountability Office officials, there is an investment gap of more than $500 billion for necessary infrastructure upgrades over the next 20 years to ensure safe drinking water and wastewater treatment. The legislation could create up to 57,000 jobs by converting a modest investment by the federal government into billions of dollars of necessary economic investment into our nation’s aging water and sewage infrastructure.
A report by Cadmus Group executives also determined that water and wastewater infrastructure investment stimulates the nation’s economy and creates jobs. This report states that for every one dollar of water and sewer infrastructure investment, it is estimated that Gross Domestic Product increases by $6.35 in the long term.