BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    



                                                                       



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          |SENATE RULES COMMITTEE            |                   SB 918|
          |Office of Senate Floor Analyses   |                         |
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                                 THIRD READING


          Bill No:  SB 918
          Author:   Pavley (D)
          Amended:  6/1/10
          Vote:     21

           
           SENATE HEALTH COMMITTEE  :  6-3, 3/24/10
          AYES:  Alquist, Cedillo, Leno, Negrete McLeod, Pavley,  
            Romero
          NOES:  Strickland, Aanestad, Cox

           SENATE ENV. QUALITY COMMITTEE  :  6-0, 4/19/10
          AYES: Simitian, Runner, Corbett, Lowenthal, Pavley,  
            Strickland
          NO VOTE RECORDED:  Hancock

           SENATE APPROPRIATIONS COMMITTEE  :  7-3, 5/27/10
          AYES:  Kehoe, Alquist, Corbett, Leno, Price, Wolk, Yee
          NOES:  Denham, Walters, Wyland
          NO VOTE RECORDED:  Cox


           SUBJECT  :    Water recycling

           SOURCE  :     Planning and Conservation League
                      WateReuse California


           DIGEST  :    This bill requires the Department of Public  
          Health (DPH) to adopt uniform water recycling criteria for  
          indirect potable water reuse for groundwater recharge, as  
          defined, by December 31, 2013, and develop and adopt  
          uniform water recycling criteria for surface water  
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          augmentation, as defined, by December 31, 2016.  The bill  
          requires DPH to investigate the feasibility of developing  
          uniform water recycling criteria for direct portable reuse  
          and to provide a final report on that investigation to the  
          Legislature by December 31, 2016.  The bill requires from  
          July 1, 2011, to June 30, 2017, inclusive, funds generated  
          by the imposition of specified liabilities for violations  
          of water quality requirements to be made available, upon  
          appropriations, by the Legislature, to DPH for purposes of  
          developing and adopting the water recycling criteria.

           ANALYSIS  :    

           Existing federal law
           
          1. Under the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA), sets public  
             health regulatory standards for drinking water.

          2. Under the Clean Water Act (CWA), regulates discharge of  
             pollutants into the waters of the United States and sets  
             quality standards for surface waters.

           Existing California law  

          1. Requires DPH to enforce laws and regulations related to  
             drinking water safety.

          2. Requires the State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB)  
             and the Regional Water Quality Control Boards (RWQCBs)  
             to enforce water quality laws and regulations for the  
             state's waterways.

          3. Requires the assessment of penalties for violations of  
             water quality laws and requires the funds generated by  
             these civil penalties to be deposited into the Waste  
             Discharge Permit Fund, to be expended by SWRCB upon  
             appropriation by the Legislature for the purpose of  
             pollution abatement in the state's waters.

          4. Establishes the Water Recycling Act of 1991, creating a  
             statewide goal to recycle a total of 700,000 acre-feet  
             of water per year by 2000 and 1,000,000 acre-feet of  
             water per year by 2010.  Requires each urban water  
             supplier to prepare, and update every five years, an  

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             urban water management plan with specified components,  
             including information on recycled water and its  
             potential for use as a water source in the service area  
             of the urban water supplier.

          5. Requires DPH to establish uniform statewide recycling  
             criteria for each type of use of recycled water use.

          This bill:

          1. Makes various findings a declarations regarding the use  
             and benefits of recycled water.

          2. Defines "direct potable reuse," "indirect potable reuse  
             for groundwater recharge" and "surface water  
             augmentation."

          3. Requires DPH to adopt uniform water recycling criteria  
             for indirect potable reuse for groundwater recharge on  
             or before December 31, 2013.

          4. Requires DPH to develop and adopt uniform water  
             recycling criteria for surface water augmentation on or  
             before December 31, 2016.

          5. Requires DPH to investigate and report to the  
             Legislature on the feasibility of developing uniform  
             water recycling criteria for direct potable reuse, and  
             requires a public review draft report to the Legislature  
             and public by June 30, 2016, and a final report by  
             December 31, 2016.

          6. Requires DPH to consider specified factors in developing  
             both the uniform criteria and the feasibility study. 

          7. Requires DPH to convene an expert panel to advise on  
             scientific and technical matters related to the  
             development of the aforementioned criteria, comprised of  
             specified experts.  Allows DPH to also appoint an  
             advisory group, task force, or other group comprised of  
             representatives of water and wastewater agencies, local  
             public health officers, and related public health and  
             environmental organizations. 


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          8. Provides that funds generated by civil penalties  
             deposited in the Waste Discharge Permit Fund between  
             July 1, 2011 and June 30, 2017 must be made available to  
             DPH upon appropriation by the Legislature.

           FISCAL EFFECT  :    Appropriation:  No   Fiscal Com.:  Yes    
          Local:  No

          According to the Senate Appropriations Committee analysis:

                          Fiscal Impact (in thousands)

           Major Provisions                     2010-11     2011-12     
           2012-13          Fund
           
          Development of criteria            $171      $171 $226       
          Special*

          * Waste Discharge Permit Fund.

           SUPPORT  :   (Verified  5/27/10)

          Planning and Conservation League (co-source)
          WateReuse California (co-source)
          California Association of Sanitation Agencies
          California Municipal Utilities Association
          California Water Association
          City of Roseville
          County Sanitation Districts of Los Angeles
          East Bay Municipal Utility District
          Eastern Municipal Water District
          Irvine Ranch Water District
          Las Virgenes Water District
          Metropolitan Water District of Southern California
          San Diego Coastkeeper
          San Diego County Water Authority
          San Gabriel Valley Council of Governments
          Sierra Club California


           ARGUMENTS IN SUPPORT  :    According to the author's office,  
          each year, California discharges nearly four million acre  
          feet of wastewater into the ocean, more than the State  
          Water Project delivers to the Bay Area, the Central Valley  

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          and Southern Caliornia.  Much of that water could be  
          recylced.  However, because the state has not adopted  
          uniform safety standards, the permitting and design  
          processes for building and operating water recycling  
          facilities are unpredictable, discouraging local  
          communities from tapping into this major water source.

          CTW:do  6/1/10   Senate Floor Analyses 

                         SUPPORT/OPPOSITION:  SEE ABOVE

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