Pallone’s E&C Committee Holds Hearing on His CLEAN Future Act & Its Drinking Water Provisions
Washington, DC – Congressman Frank Pallone, Jr. (NJ-06) today held a hearing in his Energy and Commerce Committee on the drinking water provisions in his CLEAN Future Act, which includes $45 billion to replace all lead service lines in the nation. In 2019, Pallone spearheaded House passage of the Water Infrastructure Fund Transfer Act that was signed into law and gave states like New Jersey the flexibility and resources they need to use federal funds to replace lead pipes. This bill allowed Newark to effectively replace lead pipes and ensure residents have access to clean drinking water.
“Access to safe drinking water is essential to our health and prosperity as a nation. Unfortunately, it is far from guaranteed. And like many aspects of our lives, the COVID-19 pandemic has shown just how important and how fragile that access is,” Pallone said at today’s hearing. “Aging infrastructure, tight state and local budgets, family budgets stretched to the limit, and climate change are all making the situation worse. Fortunately, the legislation we will consider today can help.”
“The CLEAN Future Act, which I introduced earlier this year with Chairmen Tonko and Rush, invests $45 billion over ten years to replace all lead service lines,” Pallone continued. “It also prioritizes replacing the lines in disadvantaged and environmental justice communities. Our states and water systems are trying to do the right thing – to find lead service lines and replace them. During today’s hearing, I heard from the EPA on how the agency and Congress can help states and water systems get it done.”
Pallone’s CLEAN Future Act addresses safe drinking water in the following ways:
- Authorizes $4.5 billion per year from fiscal year 2022-2031 to replace lead service lines, with priority for replacing lines in disadvantaged and environmental justice communities;
- Increases and extends the authorization for the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund to $54.69 million for fiscal year 2022-2031;
- Increases and extends the authorization for the Drinking Water System Resilience Funding program to $50 million per year from fiscal year 2022-2031; and
- Establishes a grant program under the Safe Drinking Water Act to aid water utilities to pay capital costs associated with treatment of PFAS, or forever chemicals, and authorizes the program at $500 million per year from fiscal year 2022-2031.
As part of his American Jobs Plan, President Biden has called on Congress to invest $111 billion in our nation’s water infrastructure – investments that can create good-paying jobs, protect public health, and strengthen communities. Pallone’s CLEAN Future Act aligns with the President’s American Jobs Plan’s safe drinking water provisions.