Funding Alternatives to the Proposed Tax on Drinking Water
Most Californians have access to safe drinking water. The search for funding to provide safe water to the communities that don’t (primarily rural, disadvantaged communities) is vitally important. The budget trailer bill proposes a tax on water as its primary funding source but there are other alternatives, including:
- Safe Drinking Water Funding Package
The first alternative to the proposed drinking water tax is the Safe Drinking Water Funding Package is the current funding proposal by the coalition. This funding package is comprised of ongoing federal safe drinking water funds, voter-approved general obligation bond funds, the assessments related to nitrates in groundwater proposed in the budget trailer bill and in SB 623, and a limited amount of state general fund dollars.
- Safe and Affordable Drinking Water Trust
The second alternative would create an irrevocable trust that would be held for the sole purpose of providing funding for safe and affordable drinking water.
- Lease Revenue Bonds for Safe Drinking Water
The third alternative would use lease revenue bonds issued for safe drinking water.
- Cap and Trade Allocation for Safe Drinking Water
The fourth alternative would allocate a percentage of Cap and Trade funding for continuous appropriation for safe drinking water.
- Governance Solution
AB 2050 (Caballero, 2018), the Small System Water Authority Act of 2018, would propose a local solution for consolidation of non-compliant public water systems based on regional governance and administration.