Call Your Legislators: Clean Water Can’t Wait
This is a critical time at the State House and we need your help. This week, the Vermont House will make key decisions about whether and how to address the $62.4 million annual investment needed to ensure all Vermonters have safe and healthy rivers, lakes, ponds and wetlands.
- Vermonters have a right to drink, fish, swim, and paddle waters that are safeguarded from pollution.
- Vermont has clean waters that need and deserve protection. Unfortunately, too many pollutants have impaired our pristine waterways, fueling toxic algal blooms, threatening public safety, decimating fish populations, and depressing property values.
- Our businesses depend on clean water, including many that rely on tourists who annually contribute $2.5 billion to our economy.
- Our state waters are essential to our physical well-being, economic vitality, and cultural identity. Vermont is a state known for green mountains and verdant valleys fed by clear and healthy streams, but that reality is under threat.
The Sergeant-at-Arms will ask where you live, and then will be able to deliver a message right into your Representative(s) hands. You can leave a brief message for them, such as:
“We need to invest now in clean rivers, lakes, and ponds. Please support short and long-term water quality funding.”
If you want a bit more context:
- Vermont’s Clean Water Act (Act 64) of 2015 set up new requirements to help us reach our water quality goals. These requirements include implementing best management practices on farm fields, treating stormwater runoff from developed lands, upgrading our wastewater treatment facilities, and conserving sensitive river corridors and wetland habitat.
- The Vermont Treasurer reported that these new requirements will cost, at a minimum, an additional $62.4 million per year for the next twenty years. Clean water is a public good and a shared responsibility, so we all need to do our part to help invest in this invaluable resource.
- With many competing budget priorities, we need to let legislators know that Vermonters value clean water. We are strongly urging legislators to enact “bridge funding” of at least $50 million over the next two years, and a long-term water funding solution that goes into effect once this funding expires.
Clean water is fundamental to healthy communities and a thriving economy. We must invest in this resource now and over the long-term.
Thank you for making a quick call to let your legislators know you support investing in clean water!
The VNRC Team