Representative Steve Knight (CA-25) introduced legislation on Tuesday that would assist efforts to provide clean water to areas like the Santa Clarita Valley that are effected by perchlorate contamination.
The Perchlorate Reclamation and Water Replenishment Act (H.R. 2116) would give the Secretary of the Interior, through the Bureau of Reclamation, clear authority to help local water agencies develop projects related to the capture, treatment, and distribution of recycled water in areas impacted by perchlorate contamination.
Santa Clarita is one area that would benefit from such funding, as numerous drinking water wells in the region sit unused because they are contaminated by the potentially harmful chemicals which were improperly disposed of after the Cold War. Authorized projects would create supplementary clean water access to make up for wells that have to be taken offline. Without additional water supply operations, a large portion of the city will remain inaccessible and unusable by residents.
“We appreciate the leadership of Representative Knight on this issue. Communities like ours that have been impacted by perchlorate contamination will now have resources to help replenish lost water supply,” said Castaic Lake Water Agency General Manager Matt Stone. “We look forward to working with him as this legislation moves through the process.”
Knight’s legislation is similar to a bill he introduced last year called the Castaic Drinking Water Act, which would authorize the Bureau of Reclamation to participate in perchlorate cleanup projects. The new measure is designed to include communities across the country facing similar problems with perchlorate contamination, and would prioritize water districts that have already taken concrete steps to address their perchlorate contamination issues.
“While California’s water outlook has improved this year, we still must take steps to ensure we have a clean and abundant water supply in the Santa Clarita Valley,” said Representative Knight. “This legislation is a local priority that would bring relief to communities.”