KCRA: Sen. Alex Padilla focuses on water affordability in hearing

By Mike Cherry

U.S. Sen. Alex Padilla, D-Calif., convened his first hearing as chair of the Senate Environment and Public Works subcommittee on Fisheries, Water, and Wildlife, on Wednesday.

Sen. Padilla appeared on the KCRA News morning show on My58 and said the hearing will focus on how rising water rates, aging infrastructure and extreme weather events have affected access and affordability of clean water across the country.

“One of the crises that has not gotten sufficient attention is water affordability,” Padilla said.”Not just whether families can afford to pay their water bill, which is a very real dynamic, but the water agencies’ long-deferred maintenance of water infrastructure has compromised supply.”

According to a state audit in 2022, California required an estimated $64.7 billion to upgrade its water infrastructure. In April, the EPA awarded a fraction of that, $391 million.

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