Gov. Perry Encourages Support of Prop. 6 to Fund State Water Plan
Gov. Rick Perry today visited O.C. Fisher Reservoir in San Angelo to highlight the importance of meeting Texas' growing water needs and funding the state water plan through Proposition 6. O.C. Fisher Reservoir is just 0.8 percent full and without additional rainfall, San Angelo has just 15 months water supply left. If approved by voters on November 5, Prop. 6 would create a $2 billion water infrastructure fund that communities like San Angelo could access to finance needed water projects.
"Earlier this year the Texas Legislature passed, and I was proud to sign, House Bill 4, which makes a historic commitment to meet our state's current and future water needs without raising a single penny in taxes," Gov. Perry said. "If Texas is to remain the best place to live, work, grow your business or raise your family, we must ensure adequate supplies for generations to come. We stand at a historic crossroads, with a prime opportunity to meet our water needs for ourselves and generations of future Texans."
Pending voter approval this fall, Prop. 6 will authorize a one-time, $2 billion investment from the state's Rainy Day Fund to create the State Water Implementation Fund for Texas (SWIFT). No state taxes will increase as a result of creating this fund. The SWIFT will leverage funding up to $30 billion in water projects over five decades, effectively fulfilling the state's portion of water plan funding. This constitutional amendment would require the regional and statewide prioritization of water projects provided in the plan and would make the financing of these projects more affordable, enabling local communities to access cost-effective interest rates to invest in water needs.
The new water accounts would be managed and administered by the Texas Water Development Board. At least 20 percent of financial assistance would be dedicated to water conservation and reuse projects, and 10 percent would support projects to serve rural areas.
By 2060, the Texas population is expected to nearly double and existing water supplies are projected to decrease by 10 percent. In order to address this, the state water plan consists of water strategies and projects centered on conservation and reuse, desalination, building new pipelines and developing reservoirs and well fields.
Chairman of the Texas Water Development Board
Vice President, Texas Farm Bureau
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