S.4189 - Water for Conservation and Farming Act116th Congress (2019-2020)
Summary: S.4189 — 116th Congress (2019-2020)All Information (Except Text)
Introduced in Senate (07/02/2020)
This bill establishes a funding source for certain water resources development projects in western states. The bill also establishes new water resources development programs, as well as reauthorizes and expands existing ones.
Specifically, the bill establishes a Bureau of Reclamation Infrastructure Fund to fund water-related programs, including water reclamation and reuse projects, dam safety projects, and the WaterSMART program (which provides assistance to eligible government entities to increase water supply). Each year from FY2031-FY2061, the Department of the Interior must deposit $300 million of revenues into this fund that would otherwise be deposited into the Reclamation Fund (which currently funds irrigation works in western states).
The bill also reauthorizes through FY2025 the WaterSMART program and expands the program, including by expanding the types of entities eligible for assistance.
In addition, the bill reauthorizes through FY2024 the Cooperative Watershed Management Program (which provides assistance to watershed groups to address water management needs) and expands the program to include projects that generate environmental benefits.
The bill also establishes new programs directed at western states to
- provide assistance to agricultural producers to create and maintain waterbird and shorebird habitats,
- award grants to eligible government entities and nonprofit conservation organizations for habitat restoration projects that improve watershed health, and
- provide assistance to eligible government entities and nonprofit organizations for aquatic ecosystem and restoration projects.