Legislative Initiatives

Advancing the power of collaborative delivery

Our focus is on sharing industry-leading research to educate policymakers about the value of collaborative delivery in improving project outcomes and delivering greater return on taxpayer investments. Through this work, we have helped expand the use of collaborative delivery and make it the fastest-growing form of project delivery in the water and wastewater sector.

ADVOCATE

Federal Efforts

From coast to coast, communities are facing a growing water crisis. Aging infrastructure, growing populations, and increasing water scarcity are stressing water and wastewater systems and requiring greater taxpayer investments to meet critical needs. To deliver the best return on taxpayer investments, we are encouraging federal officials to enact policies that enable the use of collaborative delivery approaches for water infrastructure projects.

As we ramp up investment in our nation’s infrastructure and work to get our economy back on track, we must advance options that generate good jobs and produce resilient projects. For too long our water and wastewater management systems have been neglected. Now is the time to reinvest, and promoting collaborative delivery approaches is a great place to start. Collaborative project delivery aids economic recovery and can put people back to work on projects more quickly than traditional design-bid-build delivery.

Our priorities include:

Permissive Legislation

We believe in expanding the toolbox to give project owners the ability to choose the best delivery method for their project needs. To make that possible, we are encouraging lawmakers to include permissive language in water infrastructure and water resource development legislation to give owners the option to use collaborative delivery methods for certain projects.

Education

Through our advocacy, we champion education for policymakers and their staff on the value of collaborative delivery methods.

Federal-State Coordination

We believe that collaboration produces better project outcomes. Through our advocacy efforts, we promote coordination among federal and state officials to better understand how collaborative delivery can be used in mix-funded projects.

State Efforts

We are committed to bringing the power of collaborative delivery to communities across the country. To achieve that goal, we partner with elected and government officials at the state as well as federal levels.

California Advocacy

SB 991 Passes in California

Local water and wastewater agencies in California will now have the flexibility to use collaborative project delivery methods with Governor Newsom’s September signing of Senate Bill 991, helping ensure important water projects will be delivered more efficiently and cost-effectively during this critical time of extended drought.

Championing the passage of this historic bill has been a top legislative priority for WCDA as our members and the California cities, counties, and water agencies we serve work to address essential infrastructure needs and ensure critical services while overcoming the restrictions of traditional project delivery methods.

Under the newly signed law, local agencies (“any city, county, city and county, or special district authorized by law to provide for the production, storage, supply, treatment, or distribution of any water from any source”) can use progressive design-build for up to 15 public works projects in excess of $5 million each. The law takes effect on January 1, 2023.

“We’re deeply appreciative of our members’ efforts to raise awareness about collaborative project delivery and share real-world examples of the benefits of progressive design-build to projects, ratepayers, and communities. Through this legislation, agencies can move critical water supply projects forward more efficiently so that California residents, businesses, and communities have more reliable water supplies during this drought and beyond,” said WCDA Executive Director Mark E. Alpert.

Prior to SB 991’s passage, municipal entities and special districts were extremely limited in their ability to adopt progressive design-build procurement, leaving hundreds of water and wastewater agencies unable to enjoy the benefits of collaborative project delivery and provide even better projects for their customers more efficiently and affordably.

But WCDA’s work is not done. Now we need to continue the education process, making sure California water and wastewater agencies and their leaders are not only aware of this important legislation, but also the delivery methods available to them to increase cost certainty, speed, innovation, and cost savings on complex projects.

Questions?

For additional information on the WCDA’s advocacy efforts, please contact Robert Golden at RGolden@WaterCollaborativeDelivery.org.