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Effective and Financially Sustainable Systems

The water infrastructure most in need of upgrading happens to be in New Jersey’s oldest cities — which are in many cases the most distressed places in the state. They have high rates of poverty and disinvestment, meaning the resources available to pay for these upgrades are extremely limited.

But even in New Jersey’s suburbs, the pipes that carry drinking water and collect sewage and stormwater are aging and in need of costly upgrades and repair. Too often, out of sight has meant out of mind when it comes to maintenance.

Jersey Water Works is helping to identify practical and innovative financing practices to help these places complete the necessary upgrades. Upgraded water systems provide a basis for greater economic growth, so the financing mechanisms represent an investment in our cities’ future.

Resources

Water Resources Baseline Topic Report

This report examines water resource and infrastructure issues in northern New Jersey, reports on current and possible future conditions, and recommends water resource objectives, outcomes, metrics and indicators for use by the Together North Jersey in its Regional Plan for Sustainable Development (RPSD). For each element of water sustainability, the report addresses whether sustainability is being achieved under current conditions and demands, and whether capacity exists for increased future demands.

Water Resources Baseline Topic Report

Policy Options: Promoting Affordability of Public Water and Sewer Service for Low-Income Households in New Jersey

This discussion paper presents policy options for improving affordability of water and wastewater service for lower income residents in New Jersey—for the benefit not only of those customers, but of all New Jerseyans who depend on their local utilities for clean, safe, and reliable water and sewer service. Jersey Water Works aims to use it to spark discussion among state and local policy makers, utility managers, water and sewer customers, community organizations, and other public sector, private sector, and non-profit stakeholders, and to use it as a basis for further analysis and development of priority recommendations. The paper is based on a review of existing literature from around the country; research on existing New Jersey laws and programs; and interviews with leaders representing or associated with a wide range of stakeholders, including publicly and privately owned utilities, state regulators, affordable housing developers and advocates, consumer advocates, environmental justice advocates, business, and labor.

Promoting Affordability of Public Water and Sewer Service for Low-Income Households in New Jersey: Policy Options

“A major deterrent to proper investment in water infrastructure is affordability . . . Municipalities with a larger share of low-income residents find it difficult to raise rates to fund water infrastructure upgrades due to the detrimental effect higher rates will have on those residents. The result is underinvestment, which is a losing proposition . . . However, while increasing rates can adversely affect low-income households, as several witnesses noted, these effects are not inevitable and can be avoided . . .” —New Jersey Legislature, Joint Legislative Task Force on Drinking Water Infrastructure, Final Report (Jan. 2018)

2018 State Asset Management Initiatives

In 2018, at the request of the United States Environmental Protection Agency and the Association of State Drinking Water Administrators states provided updates on their asset management activities.

The purpose of this document, State Asset Management Initiatives, is for state agencies to learn about the various initiatives that other states are undertaking involving the promotion of asset management. The categories of initiatives include: funding activities, regulatory activities, assistance activities and internal activities. The matrix on pages one and two provides a snapshot of each state’s activities. The remainder of the document contains descriptions that states provided about the activities. Not all activities marked in the matrix have associated descriptions.

State Asset Management Initiatives

The Economic Impacts of a $1 Billion Increase in New Jersey Drinking Water, Wastewater and Stormwater Capital Investment

This report, The Economic Impacts of a $1 Billion Increase in New Jersey Drinking Water, Wastewater and Stormwater Capital Investment, examines how investing the additional $1 billion needed on the drinking water, wastewater and stormwater networks would create economic benefits throughout the state economy. The report was commissioned by the Utility and Transportation Contractors Association.

Utility Strengthening through Consolidation: A Breifing Paper

Despite being an important tool for sustainable water management, utility consolidation is one of the most difficult topics to discuss in the sector. Communities considering options to better meet their water service needs struggle to find fact-based information. Historically, consolidation has put different interests in the water sector in opposition and been difficult to undertake. The US Water Alliance developed this briefing paper to support informed, fact-based dialogue on the consolidation of water utility service in America. This document is organized as follows:

  • Guiding Principles.
  • Understanding Water Utility Consolidation.
  • Recommendations.

Utility Strengthening through Utility Consolidation: A Briefing Paper (US Water Alliance, 2019)

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