An Act to amend the Delaware Code relating to Clean Water for Delaware. Many of the State’s waters do not meet water quality standards to support their designated uses, such as for drinking, swimming or supporting aquatic life. The Clean Water for Delaware Act establishes a framework for assessing needs and planning and implementing projects that support Delaware’s efforts to improve the quality of the State’s water supply and waterways. A Delaware Clean Water Trust account is created as a funding source for executing projects highlighted by this framework. The Trust account will have oversight from the Clean Water Trust Oversight Committee (the “Committee”). The Committee will draw upon recommendations from the Water Infrastructure Advisory Council, (WIAC), the county Conservation Districts’, experts in the effected Cabinet agencies and other public input with the goal of assisting municipal and county governments and others in implementing affordable water quality projects. The Committee is required to develop and publish an Annual Report and multi-year Strategic Plan for Clean Water with annual updates. HA 2 names the annual report that the Clean Water Trust Oversight Committee must produce “The Mulrooney Report” after former Representative Michael Mulrooney. This amendment adds that the Strategic Plan include a prioritized list of proposed projects including those projects with increased accessibility to lower-income and traditionally underserved communities. The amendment increases the number of members to The Water Infrastructure Advisory Council by adding a member representing the water utilities, the president of 1 of the conservation districts, and a member of the Farm Bureau, who shall serve as non-voting members, and at the pleasure of the Governor. The Amendment provides that these nonvoting members may provide recommendations to the Council relating to stormwater, drainage, flood protection, resource and conservation development projects, agricultural and conservation cost share, cover crops, conservation reserve enhancement, and tax ditches. This amendment also makes clear that only the voting members of the Water Infrastructure Advisory Council can vote on motions, approve the 6-year water supply and wastewater infrastructure plan, the assessment, and recommendations for loans or grants. Finally, this amendment provides for at least 3 public meetings prior to publication of the initial Annual Report and Strategic Plan, and thereafter, at least 1 public meeting prior to publication of the Annual Report and annually updated Strategic Plan. All such meetings must comply with § 10004 of Title 29.
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