Washington, D.C. – Chair Raúl M. Grijalva (D-Ariz.) today hailed House passage of the Colorado River Drought Contingency Plan Authorization Act, which he introduced April 2. Thanks to Grijalva’s leadership, the House approved the bill – formally designated H.R. 2030 – by a voice vote, expediting passage and avoiding procedural hurdles to get the bill closer to President Trump’s desk as fast as possible.
During a related debate in the Senate this afternoon, it was agreed that as soon as Grijalva’s bill is transmitted to the Senate, it will be considered approved and will be sent directly to the White House.
Grijalva’s widely endorsed bill, which received unanimous praise from Colorado River basin states, tribes and other stakeholders, implements the Drought Contingency Plan, a water-sharing agreement between Arizona, Colorado, Wyoming, Utah, California, New Mexico and Nevada that accounts for ongoing water shortages and regional climate change throughout the Southwest.
The Arizona Republic praised Grijalva’s leadership in advancing the bill last week, noting his intention to have the Natural Resources Committee serve as a public resource for data and research as the agreement is implemented and underscoring his commitment to widening the policy conversation beyond state-level representatives as the agreement is put in place.
The agreement establishes new water conservation measures to protect reservoir levels at Lake Mead and Lake Powell, using voluntary water reductions and innovative management strategies to avoid historic lows in Colorado River reservoirs, which would trigger dramatic water delivery cuts to the seven states.
In addition to each state, Grijalva’s bill enjoyed support from tribes throughout the region and from an alliance of conservation groups, who wrote a joint April 1 letter urging congressional approval. More information about the extraordinary network of support for Grijalva’s bill is available at http://bit.ly/2G9bT2U.
Chair Grijalva’s video statement hailing today’s passage of the bill is available at https://twitter.com/NRDems/status/1115377188482818051. Video of the entire House discussion of Grijalva’s bill is available at http://bit.ly/2IqHleN. Both videos are public and available for repurposing.