Water Quest Report: Water Porject Funding 12/21/12
CBS 7 News
December 21, 2012
WEST TEXAS - The recent drought was a wake up call to the state, that water must be a focus but the price tag is through the roof and funding sources just won't cover the cost. Lieutenant Governor David Dewhurst is suggesting the state take $1 billion out of the rainy day fund to be used for a water infrastructure bank.
"A separate water supply infrastructure bank funded with a billion dollars and that would be loans to people interested in developing water projects and that money would be paid back so all together 7 billion dollars would be made available," said Wendy Gordon, Ph.D. Water Quest Inc.
But the state water plan calls for $53 billion in current water-related needs, not to mention future.
"There's probably billions of dollars more in need so a lot of money is needed for these projects and while these low interest loans are a step in the right direction, they aren't going to fund all these needs," said Gordon.
Alternative sources of funding are being explored. Higher water rates and bottled water taxes are some options being looked at.
"People are never really happy to hear about new taxes or fees but at the end of the day, we gotta find a way to fund these projects," said Gordon.
And if our state leaders don't step up, the task will fall in the hands of our local leaders.
"If the legislature does not provide funding then we def need some local based finding," said Gordon.
Water Quest Inc. is free-resource available for anyone in the Permian Basin. The experts can answer your questions about water related issues and conservation. They can be contacted at (432) 580-5722.