A task force of the U.S. Conference of Mayors

Policy Resolutions: 74th Annual Conference (Las Vegas, 2006)

INCREASING LOCAL GOVERNMENT ACTIVITIES TO HELP COMMUNITIES CONSERVE MUNICIPAL WATER SUPPLIES

WHEREAS, a recent Survey conducted by The U.S. Conference of Mayors Urban Water Council identified water supply availability as the third highest water resources priority facing Americaís principal cities; and

WHEREAS, the Survey also indicated that drought management; regional conflict over water use; water rights; groundwater depletion and inter-basin transfers were among the top water resources priorities of cities; and

WHEREAS, the Survey revealed that 35 percent of the nationís principal cities will be facing critical water shortages in 2015 and 2025; and

WHEREAS, 60 percent of the nationís principal cities have made, or plan to make, major capital investments in water supply infrastructure between 2000 and 2009, including development and/or expansions of reservoirs, constructing or rehabilitating ground water wells, construction of desalination infrastructure to treat brackish water supplies, and developing water recycling and reclamation infrastructure at great cost; and

WHEREAS, the United States Geological Survey (USGS) estimates that between 1985 and 2000 the amount of municipal water consumption at the level has grown nationally by nearly 25 percent, especially in cities that have not adopted and implemented water conservation measures; and

WHEREAS, water supplies are critical to the economic and social vitality of our cities and metropolitan areas;

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that The U.S. Conference of Mayors urges cities to take local action to: benchmark current levels of municipal water consumption by all sectors of water users residential, commercial, industrial, agricultural, institutional, municipal, recreational, etc.); set water conservation levels appropriate for each water consumption sector with vigorous goals for water use reduction; establish public education outreach programs or improve existing programs; identify financial incentives to reward water conservation measures (such as low flush/no flush toilets; low volume spray valves in restaurants and cafeterias; municipal grounds water recycling; and others); and other measures that will result in achieving significant water use reduction; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that The U.S. Conference of Mayors strongly urges cities to consider modernizing water and wastewater use metering in order to more accurately monitor water use, improve capacity to detect leakage and reduce Unaccounted for Water (UAW) loss; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that The U.S. Conference of Mayors strongly urges cities to consider altering water rate structures to encourage water users to conserve; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that The U.S. Conference of Mayors strongly urges local governments to develop and implement ordinances, policies and/or regulations that promote water conservation, water reclamation, water reuse and water recycling; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that The U.S. Conference of Mayors supports, and urges Congress to reintroduce and enact, "The Twenty-First Century Water Commission Act of 2003" and its goal to develop a comprehensive water strategy designed to identify incentives to ensure a dependable and adequate water supply for the next 50 years; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that The U.S. Conference of Mayors calls upon Congress to include a local elected Mayor to serve as a Member of the "Commission" to ensure that local government which provides almost 90 percent of the funding for water infrastructure is properly represented in the planning process.


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