Print Page   |   Contact Us   |   Sign In   |   Register
2012 - Farm Bill and CCR - Contact Your Legislators
Share |

Farm Bill and CCR Reports - please contact your legislators

UPDATE - Thursday - June 21 - 1:43pm

Good afternoon,

I have to report that the amendment offered by Sen. Toomey to allow posting of Consumer Confidence Reports on the Internet failed by two votes, 58-41. The amendment needed 60 votes to pass. We hear that six senators switched their votes from "aye" to "nay" in the waning minutes of the vote to defeat the amendment. Attached is a breakdown of how each senator voted.

Thank you very much for your response! Many AWWA members jumped in on this debate. We did get enough votes to get some momentum for future efforts on this.

Tommy Holmes
Legislative Director


Good morning!

Today the U.S. Senate will begin floor debate on comprehensive legislation setting agricultural policy for the next five years, commonly called the Farm Bill. Sen. Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania will be offering a bipartisanamendment that would allow drinking water utilities to post their annual Consumer Confidence Reports on-line. They would have to notify customers where to find the CCRs in the same manner as the customer has elected to receive his or her water bill. Text is attached. This on-line posting would be allowed only if the utility had no violations of maximum contaminant levels in the previous year.

Phone calls or e-mails are needed today!

Tommy Holmes
Legislative Director
American Water Works Association
1300 Eye St. NW Suite 701 W
Washington, DC 20005202 326-6128

TEXT OF AMENDMENT

SA 2247. Mr. TOOMEY (for himself, Mr. PRYOR, Mr. INHOFE, Mr. BOOZMAN, and Mr. SESSIONS) submitted an amendment intended to be proposed by him to the bill S. 3240, to reauthorize agricultural programs through 2017, and for other purposes; which was ordered to lie on the table; as follows:

On page 1009, after line 11, add the following:

SEC. 122__. CONSUMER CONFIDENCE REPORTS BY COMMUNITY WATER SYSTEMS.

(a) Findings.--Congress finds that--

(1) community water systems play an important role in rural United States infrastructure; and

(2) since rural water infrastructure projects are routinely funded under the rural development programs of the Department of Agriculture, Congress should strive to reduce the regulatory and paperwork burdens placed on community water systems.

(b) Method of Delivering Report.--Section 1414(c)(4)(A) of the Safe Drinking Water Act (42 U.S.C. 300g 3(c)(4)(A)) is amended--

(1) in the first sentence, by striking ``The Administrator, in consultation'' and inserting the following:

``(i) IN GENERAL.--The Administrator, in consultation'';

(2) in clause (i) (as designated by paragraph (1)), in the first sentence, by striking ``to mail to each customer'' and inserting ``to provide, in accordance with clause (ii) or (iii), as applicable, to each customer''; and

(3) by adding at the end the following:

``(ii) MAILING REQUIREMENT FOR VIOLATION OF MAXIMUM CONTAMINANT LEVEL.--If a violation of the maximum contaminant level for any regulated contaminant has occurred during the year concerned, the regulations under clause (i) shall require the applicable community water system to mail a copy of the consumer confidence report to each customer of the system.

``(iii) MAILING REQUIREMENT ABSENT ANY VIOLATION OF MAXIMUM CONTAMINANT LEVEL.--

``(I) IN GENERAL.--If no violation of the maximum contaminant level for any regulated contaminant has occurred during the year concerned, the regulations under clause (i) shall require the applicable community water system to make the consumer confidence report available by, at the discretion of the community water system--

``(aa) mailing a copy of the consumer confidence report to each customer of the system; or

``(bb) subject to subclause (II), making a copy of the consumer confidence report available on a publicly accessible Internet site of the community water system and by mail, at the request of a customer.

``(II) REQUIREMENTS.--If a community water system elects to provide consumer confidence reports to consumers under subclause (I)(bb), the community water system shall provide to each customer of the community water system, in plain language and in the same manner (such as in printed or electronic form) in which the customer has elected to pay the bill of the customer, notice that--

``(aa) the community water system has remained in compliance with the maximum contaminant level for each regulated contaminant during the year concerned; and

``(bb) a consumer confidence report is available on a publicly accessible Internet site of the community water system and, on request, by mail.''.

(c) Conforming Amendments.--Section 1414(c)(4) of the Safe Drinking Water Act (42 U.S.C. 300g 3(c)(4)) is amended--

(1) in subparagraph (C), in the matter preceding clause (i), by striking ``mailing requirement of subparagraph (A)'' and inserting ``mailing requirement of clause (ii) or (iii) of subparagraph (A)''; and

(2) in subparagraph (D), in the first sentence of the matter preceding clause (i), by

[Page: S3904]

striking ``mailing requirement of subparagraph (A)'' and inserting ``mailing requirement of clause (ii) or (iii) of subparagraph (A)''.

(d) Application; Administrative Actions.--

(1) IN GENERAL.--The amendments made by this section take effect on the date that is 90 days after the date of the enactment of this Act.

(2) REGULATIONS.--Not later than 90 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency shall promulgate any revised regulations and take any other actions necessary to carry out the amendments made by this section.

Why we oppose:

Responsible Bidder Requirements Will Prevent Small Contractors to Bid and Work on Local Government and Private Development Projects: Current law regarding the responsible bidder requirements only apply to contracts covered by the state procurement code (IDOT & CDB projects). Small contractors have been experiencing serious problems with the requirement of "participation” in a USDOL approved apprentice and training requirement. Many are unable to comply with this requirement.

If SB 2643 were to be enacted, this requirement would be extended to all public works projects including local government projects and private development that receive state or local assistance. It is not feasible or financially viable for small contractors to have a USDOL approved apprentice and training program. The result is that small contractors will be shut out of bidding local construction work and local workers working for those contractors will be out of work.

Additional Bid Information Requirements Are Overly Burdensome, Will Reduce Competition and Raise Construction Costs for Taxpayers: We believe that the provisions will be difficult for contractors to comply with. No definition of "journeyman” or "apprentice” is provided which likely will create inconsistent application of the law and difficulty for compliance by especially small contractors.

Unintended consequences of this measure is the likely compliance difficulty for small contractors who more and more are inclined to NOT to bid on public works projects because of the complication of compliance with the Prevailing Wage Act and the burdensome reporting requirements. Fewer bidders lessen competition and increase the cost of projects for taxpayers. It also makes it more difficult for local government units to procure local contractors and use local labor. SB 2643 adds additional issues for local government units to have to administer and monitor.

VOTE NO on SB 2643


Associated Builders & Contractors
IL Assn. of County Board Members & Commissioners
Illinois Assn. of County Engineers
Illinois Chamber of Commerce
Illinois Construction Industry Committee
Illinois Municipal League
Illinois Statewide School Management Alliance
IL Section, American Water Works Assn.
Lake County Municipal League
McLean County
Midwest Truckers Association
National Federation of Independent Business
Northwest Municipal Conference
South Suburban Mayors & Managers Association
Township Officials of Illinois

Membership Software Powered by YourMembership.com®  ::  Legal