Adaptable sample letter available for communicating needs to local representatives
Water Environment Federation (WEF) members and other advocates for water infrastructure can make their voices heard as Congress and the incoming president develop a large economic stimulus package that could be passed and signed into law as early as Inauguration Day--Jan. 20, 2009. This legislation will provide immediate funding for a variety of ready-to-go capital improvement programs, including those for water and wastewater.WEF has joined with other members of the Water Infrastructure Network (WIN) in calling for a minimum of $20 billion in funding for water projects. In addition to the water quality and public health benefits associated with improved water and wastewater systems, the WIN letter estimates that at least 700,000 domestic jobs in construction, manufacturing and engineering could be generated by this level of new investment.Because water systems are not always as visible or newsworthy as some other aspects of public infrastructure, it is vitally important that members of Congress hear from local utilities and others working in the water sector about the need to include this funding.WEF encourages members and water advocates to take a few minutes to reach out to their elected representatives and tell them about the value of water to their communities. People can write, e-mail, fax or phone House and Senate representatives to support the inclusion of at least $20 billion for ready-to-go water infrastructure projects in the economic recovery package now being developed.The group has prepared a sample letter, available at http://www.wef.org/GovernmentAffairs/ActionAlerts/index.htm, that can be adapted for communicating to local representatives. This letter can be modified to incorporate information about specific projects in a user's state or community and the water quality and economic benefit that these projects will provide. To verify the names and addresses of congressional representatives, visit www.congressmerge.com/onlinedb/index.htm.