Last month, Congress allocated an additional $100 million to the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation to address prevalent drought conditions. In response to this new funding, the WateReuse Association (WRA) and seven other professional water organizations wrote a joint letter to the Bureau requesting that a portion of the funds be invested in water reuse research and infrastructure.
Along with WRA, the organizations that signed the letter include the National Association Clean Water Agencies, American Public Works Association, National Association of Water Companies, Water Environment Federation, Association of Metropolitan Water Agencies, American Water Works Association and the Association of California Water Agencies, according to a press release by the WRA.
The letter, which referred to a new WateReuse Research Foundation study, highlighted that 92 agencies in 14 states across the country are currently developing recycled water projects. It also emphasized water reuse as an economically responsible way to manage water shortages stating it is comparable in costs (or even less expensive) than potential alternative sources. However, most of the public agencies cited in the study will require additional funding for completion of their projects. 
Through collaboration with the federal government, there is potential for an immediate and long-term impact. Investing in water reuse extends limited water supplies, sustains current resources, and provides water for future uses.  If awarded, the added funding from the Bureau of Reclamation to WRA and other organizations will help provide over 900,000 acre-feet of additional water supply. 
When asked about the letter, Melissa L. Meeker, Executive Director for WRA said, “On an important issue like this one where there is potential to create significant new water supply at a time when it is urgently needed, it is vital that the water community speak with one voice in requesting federal support.”  Congress has requested the Bureau of Reclamation announce how it will distribute the $100 million in drought response funds by February.
To learn more about the specific details of the letter to the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, please visit: https://watereuse.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/LETTER-Reclamation-Fund-Reuse.pdf
 WateReuse Association. Associations Unite in Support of Water Reuse Investment. WateReuse Association. https://watereuse.org/associations-unite-in-support-of-water-reuse-investment/
 WateReuse Association. Letter of Reclamation Funds for Reuse. WateReuse Association. https://watereuse.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/LETTER-Reclamation-Fund-Reuse.pdf
 Municipal Sewer & Water Magazine. Associations Unite in Support of Water Reuse Investment. Municipal Sewer & Water Magazine .