July 12, 2017
Press Release

For Immediate Release

July 12, 2017

Contact: T.W. Arrighi

(202) 225-5611

 

Rep. Mimi Walters Urges Support for California’s Water Resources & the GROW Act

 

Washington, DCToday, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the GROW Act (H.R. 23), which modernizes antiquated federal water policies to deliver critical water resources to all Californians.  Introduced by Congressman David Valadao (R-CA), H.R. 23 expands water storage capabilities, improves management, expedites transfers, and protects water rights.  The GROW Act will ensure that vital water resources are available throughout the West and equip communities like Orange County to prepare for future drought conditions.

Rep. Mimi Walters delivered the following remarks on the House floor in support of this legislation.

 

Click the image above to watch Rep. Mimi Walters' Full Remarks

“Mr. Speaker, I rise today in support of H.R. 23, the GROW Act, which makes important and necessary regulatory reforms to allow for better management of water resources throughout the West.

 

My home state of California recently suffered its worst drought on record, which significantly affected the entire state.

 

Families, communities, workers, and businesses all made significant sacrifices to conserve water and mitigate the drought’s impact.

 

I applaud the water agencies and residents in my home district of Orange County for taking the necessary steps to adapt to the severe drought conditions.

 

While substantial rainfall this winter effectively ended California’s drought, the recent crisis was not just from a lack of rain.

 

It’s also the result of failed state and federal policies that have mismanaged critical water resources throughout the West.

 

The GROW Act is a crucial step toward addressing these failed policies.

 

H.R. 23 will help California recover from this devastating drought and ensure the state is better equipped to handle future water deficiencies.


In addition to addressing water delivery and water rights issues, the bill also facilitates the development of new water storage projects, which is a key water management tool for Southern California water agencies.

 

These projects are critical to a number of California communities, like Orange County, that lack access to water even during non-drought conditions.

 

The GROW Act removes regulatory barriers by streamlining the permitting and approval process for new infrastructure projects.

 

Under current law, new water storage construction projects require approval from a number of federal, state, and local agencies.

 

This bill provides for a consolidated permitting process that would require federal agencies to conduct coordinated reviews of non-federal storage projects. 

 

The GROW Act will also expedite feasibility studies for much-needed federal storage projects, some of which have been unnecessarily delayed for years.

 

I yield back the remainder of my time.”

 

Walters represents California’s 45th District and serves on the House Energy and Commerce Committee.