Please call your legislators - clean water can't wait!
Dear Lake friends,
As someone who cares about clean water, are you willing to make one phone call? This week, the Vermont House will make key decisions about whether and how to address the $62.4 million annual investment needed to protect and restore our waterways. Please take a moment to call your legislators today and let them know you want them to invest in water clean-up now.
Here are some reasons why:
- Our state waters are essential to our physical well-being, economic vitality and quality of life.
- Vermonters have a right to drink, fish, swim, and paddle waters that are safeguarded from pollution.
- Our businesses rely on clean water, including many that depend on tourists who annually contribute $2.5 billion to our economy.
- Water pollution fuels toxic algal blooms, threatens public safety, decimates fish populations and depresses property values.
- Vermont's brand as a state known for green mountains and verdant valleys fed by clear and healthy streams, cannot be sustained unless we invest in protecting and restoring our waterways.
Please make a quick phone call to your representatives today. To leave a message, simply call the Vermont State House Sergeant-at-Arms at: (802) 828-2228.
The Sergeant-at-Arms will ask where you live, and then will be able to deliver a short message right into your Representative(s) hands. The message is simple:
“Please support clean water funding this year and over the long-term to ensure all Vermonters have safe, healthy waters.”
Your call can make a difference. Currently some legislators remain unconvinced of the need for dedicated water funding. The Lake Champlain Committee (LCC) and partners are strongly urging legislators to take, at a minimum, the following actions this year:
- Enact short-term “bridge funding” of at least $50 million over the next two years (as recommended by Vermont’s Treasurer).
- Enact a long-term funding solution that embodies an “all-in” ethic with direct connection to the causes of water pollution.
Vermont’s Clean Water Act (Act 64), passed in 2015, set up new requirements to help reach water quality goals. These requirements include implementing best management practices on farm fields, treating stormwater runoff from developed lands, upgrading wastewater treatment facilities, and conserving sensitive river corridors and wetland habitat. The Vermont Treasurer reported that these new requirements will cost, at a minimum, an additional $62.4 million per year for the next 20 years. Clean water is a public good and a shared responsibility. With many competing budget priorities, we need to let legislators know that Vermonters place high value on clean water. Legislators need to hear support for enacting “bridge funding” of at least $50 million over the next two years, and for a long-term water funding solution after the bridge funding expires.
Thank you for making a quick call to let your legislators know you support investing in clean water!
Lori Fisher, LCC Executive Director