Where We Stand Hero

AMWUA vigorously protects our members’ ability to provide assured, safe, and sustainable water supplies and advocates for Arizona’s continued water security.

Where We Stand On The Issues

Smart water policy and careful planning, investment, and management have enabled AMWUA’s members to build robust, reliable water supplies that support our communities and economy. It is imperative that we continue to address the issues in front of us to ensure the future viability of those supplies. Learn more about some of the issues we are working on:

Where We Stand on Legislation

2022 - Fifty-fifth Legislature - Second Regular Session

Arizona Senate

SB 1022: Groundwater pumping; measuring; reporting

In Brief: Mandates water use metering and reporting for nonexempt groundwater wells throughout the state

Sponsor(s): Steele

Last Action: Assigned to Senate NREW. Did not receive a Committee hearing.

Description: Requires monitoring and annual reporting for nonexempt groundwater wells throughout the state. Water users who irrigate 10 or fewer acres that are not part of a larger farming operation, or water users who pump <10 acre-feet per year for non-irrigation use are exempted from this requirement.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/76284?SessionId=125

SB 1023: Well drilling; groundwater basins

In Brief: Establishes a well drilling moratorium in the Upper San Pedro and Verde Valley Subbasins

Sponsor(s): Steele

Last Action: Assigned to Senate NREW 1/10. Did not receive a Committee hearing.

Description: Establishes a well drilling moratorium that prevents new wells in the Upper San Pedro and Verde Valley groundwater subbasins until the conclusion of the General Stream Adjudication unless a well is a replacement well or does not pump subflow.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/76285?SessionId=125

SB 1067: Cities; water infrastructure finance authority

In Brief: Streamlines statutory requirements for accessing WIFA infrastructure funds

Sponsor(s): Shope

Last Action: Passed House Rules 3/28

Description: SB 1067 as amended allows cities and towns of any size to access federal water-related infrastructure funds appropriated by Congress in the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act without having to place the loan agreement on the ballot.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/76344?SessionId=125

SB 1102: Homeowners' associations; solar, water devices

In Brief: Homeowners Associations (HOA) cannot prohibit the installation of a water saving device or indoor or outdoor water conservation practice.

Sponsor(s): Mendez & Salman

Last Action: Assigned to Senate Committees 1/10. Did not receive a hearing.

Description: Homeowners Associations (HOA) cannot prohibit the installation of a water saving device or indoor or outdoor water conservation practice. The HOA may adopt reasonable rules governing proposed water conservation practices. AMWUA supported this legislation in 2019.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/76403?SessionId=125

SB 1171: S/E treated process water; definitions

In Brief: Allows beverage manufacturing facilities to pump groundwater and generate LTSC with treated wastewater

Sponsor(s): Kerr

Last Action: Passed House Rules 3/28

Description: Amends the statutory definition of “Water that cannot reasonably be used directly” (WaterBUD) to include Treated Process Water, defined as: “groundwater that is used for nonirrigation use in a facility that manufactures food and beverage products and subsequently treated at the site of use for storage.” This legislation is being introduced on behalf of two beverage manufacturing companies in the Valley who seek to recharge their industrial wastewater and generate long-term storage credits (LTSC) to increase their legally-allowable groundwater pumping. Currently, wastewater generated from industrial processes does not fall under the legal definition of “effluent” and is ineligible to accrue LTSC when stored underground. SB 1171 limits the use of treated process water LTSC to the same subbasin where the water was stored, and also limits the assignment (i.e., transfer or sale) of the LTSC to an affiliate or successor of the original storer. The AMWUA cities have serious concerns with the proposed statutory amendments, particularly the potential for this bill to incentivize industrial users to extract fossil groundwater and convert it to LTSC for sale, as well as the precedent of allowing groundwater-dependent industrial users to proliferate and remove themselves from centralized water management.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/76662

SB 1198: Local governments; lobbying; prohibition

In Brief: Prohibits governmental entities from funding external lobbying activities.

Sponsor(s): Peterson & 2 others

Last Action: Failed Senate vote 3/7

Description: Local governments, including cities and towns, are prohibited from entering into a contract for lobbying services and may not spend monies for lobbying services unless that person is an employee of the city or town. Local governmental entities may not pay membership dues to an organization that engages in lobbying activities. Exempts cities or towns with a population of fewer than 75,000 persons or a county with a population of fewer than 250,000 persons.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/76881?SessionId=125

SB 1489: Subdivisions; definition; lots

In Brief: Amends statutory definition of "subdivision" to 4 or more parcels

Sponsor(s): Otondo & 6 others

Last Action: Assigned to Senate Committees 1/27. Did not receive a hearing.

Description: Amends the statutory definition of “subdivision.” Currently subdivision is defined as land divided into six or more parcels where at least one parcel is less than 36 acres. SB 1489 would amend the definition to land divided into four or more parcels. It is AMWUA’s understanding that this bill is intended to address lot splits and wildcat subdivisions to bring more development under the jurisdiction of the Assured and Adequate Water Supply (AAWS) programs. From a water resource planning perspective, this would reduce the future unreplenished groundwater pumping associated with new developments that are not currently subject to AAWS requirements.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/77443

SB 1492: Subsequent irrigation non-expansion areas; procedures

In Brief: Modifies the procedures for determination of a new Irrigation Non-Expansion Area (INA)

Sponsor(s): Otondo & 15 others

Last Action: Assigned to Senate committees 1/27. Did not receive a hearing.

Description: These measures introduce a number of modifications to the procedures for establishment of new irrigation non-expansion areas (INA). This proposal would allow ADWR to consider projected rates of groundwater withdrawal as part of the determination of a new INA. The bill also clarifies which entities are eligible to petition the State to create a new INA and would mandate that petitioners submit a groundwater model and hydrologic assessment using methodology approved by the ADWR Director. The language aligns with the suggested statutory changes presented by ADWR in the summer of 2017 during the Governor’s Water Solutions Conversations. AMWUA has previously supported this legislation.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/77446

SB 1564: Domestic water districts; wastewater; annexation

In Brief: Establishes statutory procedures for a municipality to dissolve a water or wastewater improvement district

Sponsor(s): Shope

Last Action: Passed Senate; transmitted to House 2/17

Description: Amends A.R.S. § 48-959, relating to the dissolution of domestic water and wastewater improvement districts. Under SB 1564, when any portion of a District is annexed into a city or town, if the municipality elects to provide water service to the newly annexed area, the District’s assets and liabilities from the newly annexed area are assumed by the city. If applicable, the District shall continue to operate outside of the boundaries of the newly annexed area. If the city determines that the District does not have the capacity to maintain peak domestic demand and fire flow requirements in the newly annexed area, the District is dissolved and the city assumes its assets and liabilities.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/77545

SB 1595: Irrigation districts; uses; drainage permit

In Brief: Authorizes Buckeye Irrigation District to export groundwater for M&I purposes

Sponsor(s): Kerr

Last Action: Assigned to Senate NREW. Did not receive a hearing.

Description: This legislation would allow the Buckeye Water Conservation & Drainage District (BWCDD) to serve groundwater to municipal and industrial water users up to the volume approved in its Drainage Water Withdrawal Permit. BWCDD has described this legislation as an effort to help nearby cities with an additional water supply as the groundwater would not carry a replenishment obligation because it originates from the Buckeye Waterlogged Area. It is unclear what local cities or users would seek to receive groundwater service from BWCDD under this new statutory authority. AMWUA has engaged with BWCDD representatives and other stakeholders to better understand the intent and consequences of this legislation. AMWUA staff and member cities have expressed significant concerns regarding the ramifications of this proposal, however SB 1595 as introduced has not been modified substantively from earlier drafts shared with stakeholders. This bill would lead to increased groundwater mining in the Buckeye Waterlogged Area, up to 30,000 AF per year, which would reduce physical availability of groundwater and count against the Phoenix AMA goal of safe-yield. The pumping and sale of this water has no conservation requirements, no replenishment obligations, and no withdrawal fees to contribute to the AMA water management objectives. Of most concern is the potential for future development to become reliant on groundwater from the waterlogged area that is temporary in nature as well as the precedence for irrigation districts to serve groundwater outside of their service area.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/77580

SB 1600: Water recharge; direct use

In Brief: Limited WaterBUD Repeal for Pinal AMA

Sponsor(s): Shope

Last Action: Assigned to Senate committees. Did not receive a hearing.

Description: Amends the definition of “Water that cannot reasonably be used directly” (WaterBUD) to include Central Arizona Project water stored underground in the Pinal AMA by a water provider located in the Pinal AMA. WaterBUD generally prohibits entities from earning or purchasing long-term storage credits (LTSC) if they are simultaneously pumping groundwater. SB 1600 would remove this prohibition from Pinal AMA water providers recharging CAP water in the Pinal AMA.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/77585

SB 1611: Arizona Water Authority

In Brief: Establishes the Arizona Water Authority

Sponsor(s): Fann & Kerr

Last Action: Assigned to Senate committees 2/1

Description: SB 1611 establishes the “Arizona Water Authority.” This bill is a placeholder for legislation under development by the Governor’s Office and House & Senate leadership. It is anticipated to restructure the Drought Mitigation Revolving Fund Board that was established in 2021 and create an entity to fund and oversee large augmentation projects.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/77602

Arizona House

HB 2037: Counties; powers; water supply projects

In Brief: Authorizes a county to coordinate with other entities on the management and distribution of federal funds for water supply projects

Sponsor(s): Cook

Last Action: Passed Senate Rules 3/21

Description: Authorizes a County Board of Supervisors to to enter into agreements for the management and distribution of federal funds related to water supply projects.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/76364?SessionId=125

HB 2053: Department of environmental quality; continuation

In Brief: Extends sunset date for ADEQ to 2030.

Sponsor(s): Griffin

Last Action: Signed by Governor 3/25

Description: Extends the sunset date for the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality for eight years, through 2030.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/76425?SessionId=125

HB 2055: Harquahala non-expansion area; groundwater transportation

In Brief: Authorizes transfers of groundwater from the Harquahala INA by private water companies

Sponsor(s): Griffin

Last Action: Passed Senate Rules 3/21

Description: This bill adds a provision to statute allowing private water companies to withdraw groundwater from purchased land in the Harquahala irrigation non-expansion area (INA) and transport that water to an initial AMA. Currently, only political subdivisions of the state can purchase land and transfer the Harquahala groundwater to AMAs. A floor amendment was adopted on 2/23 that adds several limitations to the bill – the groundwater must be used by the transporting entity’s customers within 5 years of transport and cannot be sold for use other than by the transporting entity. A private water company transferring the groundwater must pay for all associated costs from charges to customers where the water is actually transported for use. ADWR must adopt Rules for compliance and reporting related to Harquahala groundwater transfers.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/76427?SessionId=125

HB 2056: Fifth management period; extension

In Brief: Extends the Fifth Management Period by ten years, lengthening the Period from to 2025 to 2035.

Sponsor(s): Griffin and 3 others

Last Action: Held in House NREW 2/15

Description: Extends the Fifth Management Period by ten years, lengthening the Period from to 2025 to 2035. Extending the Fifth Management Period by a decade does not alter the end date of the 5MP regulations, as the conservation requirements continue to remain in effect indefinitely, whether the Period ends in 2025 or 2035. ADWR sought to pursue legislative authority to establish a Sixth Management Period; however, it appears that this bill will not be amended to accomplish the Department’s objective. A striker was introduced related to P4 transfer prohibitions

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/76428?SessionId=125

HB 2057: Water supply development fund; revisions

In Brief: Technical Corrections to the Water Supply Development Fund

Sponsor(s): Griffin & Bowers

Last Action: Signed by Governor 3/25

Description: The Water Supply Development Revolving (WSDR) fund was established in 2007 and was intended to assist rural water providers acquire water supplies through loans and grants. The statutory criteria associated with WSDR Fund were substantively modified in the 2021 Legislative Session by HB 2388 which expanded applicant eligibility, as well as a $46 million appropriation to the Fund. This bill, HB 2057, makes technical corrections, deletes references to the defunct WSDR Fund Committee, and makes conforming changes to last year’s legislation that expanded the maximum grant limit to $250,000.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/76429?SessionId=125

HB 2099: Municipalities; membership dues; limit

In Brief: Imposes a "per capita" formula for membership dues for all membership organizations comprised of cities or towns.

Sponsor(s): Cobb & 2 others

Last Action: Passed House COW 2/3

Description: This bill applies to all organizations whose majority of paid members are cities or towns. HB 2099 establishes a “per capita” metric that divides a city’s membership dues by its total population. No city may pay membership dues to an organization if its “per capita” ratio is greater than the ratio of the largest city within the same organization. This formula is incompatible with AMWUA’s calculation of membership assessments which are not solely based on population. This legislation would impair the ability of municipalities to establish and participate in organizations that do not follow this narrow structure for establishing membership dues.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/76496?Sessionid=125

HB 2129: ADEQ; direct potable reuse; rules

In Brief: Requires ADEQ to develop a regulatory framework for DPR; appropriates $3 million to ADEQ

Sponsor(s): Griffin & Bowers

Last Action: Passed Senate NREW 3/9

Description: Authorizes the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ) to adopt all rules necessary to develop a direct potable reuse program and develop Rules. Appropriates $1,500,000 in FYs 2023 and 2024 to operate this program.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/76535

HB 2131: Artificial grass ban prohibited; HOAs

In Brief: Prohibits an HOA from banning installation artificial turf

Sponsor(s): Kavanagh

Last Action: Passed Senate 3/23

Description: HB 2131 prevents a homeowner’s association (HOA) from prohibiting installation or use of artificial turf on any member’s property. The HOA may adopt reasonable rules regarding the installation and appearance of artificial grass.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/76537?SessionId=125

HB 2231: Universities; water rights adjudication

In Brief: Authorizes Arizona universities to assist small claimants in the General Stream Adjudications

Sponsor(s): Griffin

Last Action: Passed Senate Rules 3/14

Description: Authorizes Arizona universities to offer pro bono assistance to General Stream Adjudication claimants who are “small landowners.” The provisions of this bill were included in a section of a 2021 budget reconciliation bill subsequently deemed unconstitutional by the Arizona Supreme Court, thus its reintroduction in this session.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/76686?SessionId=125

HB 2256: Assured water supply; service area

In Brief: Statutory amendments to the definition of "Service Area" for AWS purposes

Sponsor(s): Cook

Last Action: Assigned to House NREW 2/3

Description: Requires the Director of ADWR, when determining the physical availability of groundwater to be drawn through future wells for an Assured Water Supply (AWS) Determination to assume that: • The service area of a city or town is coterminous with the boundaries of the city or town; • The service area of a private water company is coterminous with the boundaries of its certificate of convenience and necessity (CC&N); and • The service area of a water improvement district is coterminous with the boundaries of the district. AMWUA and ADWR have identified several concerns with this proposal. First, HB 2256 would establish statutory definitions of “service area” that directly contradict the Groundwater Code’s existing provisions that define and govern service area expansions. This bill would also allow AWS Determinations to be approved on the premise that a future well will be drilled in a location where there is no guarantee the water provider will have access in the future. ADWR has noted that this proposed legislation is inconsistent with the consumer protection goals of the AWS Program.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/76719?SessionId=125

HB 2258: Assured water; supply; nonlocal water

In Brief: Statutory amendments relating to commingled water supplies

Sponsor(s): Cook

Last Action: Assigned to House NREW 1/24

Description: HB 2258 attempts to enable water providers delivering commingled water supplies (surface water, groundwater, effluent) to account for deliveries to an individual end user as if groundwater had not been delivered to that user. Presumably this would allow – or require – a water provider to account for certain water supplies going to specific end users, despite physical deliveries of a blended supply. The objective of HB 2258 is to authorize water providers to wheel specific supplies to individual customers under this provision, ending the long-standing ADWR requirement that an applicant for a Determination of Assured Water Supply must demonstrate physical availability of any groundwater delivered through the water provider’s distribution system. AMWUA and ADWR have identified significant concerns with this proposal, including that it undermines the AWS Program by preventing ADWR from evaluating physical availability of groundwater and could create infeasible municipal water provider reporting requirements. Furthermore, the requirement to assign specific water supplies to specific customers despite deliveries of a blended supply could lead to inequities in within a municipal water service area between different customers.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/76721?SessionId=125

HB 2327: Drought mitigation revolving fund; appropriation

In Brief: Appropriates _____ billion dollars (unspecified) to the Drought Mitigation Revolving Fund.

Sponsor(s): Bowers & Toma

Last Action: Assigned to House NREW 1/20

Description: Appropriates _____ billion dollars (unspecified) to the Drought Mitigation Revolving Fund.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/76784?SessionId=125

HB 2331: Area of impact; stored water

In Brief: Amends statutory definitions of Area of Impact

Sponsor(s): Cook

Last Action: Assigned to House NREW 1/24

Description: HB 2331 moves statutory definitions of “Area of Impact” (AOI), previously only applicable to Designation applications in the Pinal AMA, to the Recharge Program statutes in Title 45, Chapter 3.1. The bill also expands the AOI for a Groundwater Savings Facility by adding a 1-mile buffer to the irrigation district boundaries. Moving the AOI definitions as proposed would have broader impacts to the Recharge Program where “AOI” is used in other regulatory processes, such as permitting requirements for an Underground Storage Facility permit. Additionally, the proposed new definition that expands the AOI of a Groundwater Savings Facility by one mile further disconnects recovery from recharge.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/76801?SessionId=125

HB 2406: Water quality fee fund

In Brief: Expands the allowable uses of ADEQ's Water Quality Fee Fund; authorizes ADEQ Rulemaking to update fees.

Sponsor(s): Griffin

Last Action: Passed Senate Rules 3/21

Description: Expands the allowable uses of ADEQ’s Water Quality Fee Fund (WQFF) to include total maximum daily load (TMDL) development, nonpoint source rulemakings, and groundwater monitoring and standards development. Also allows ADEQ to pursue a rulemaking to update AZPDES and APP fees which have been static since 2011. Rep. Griffin is running this bill on behalf of ADEQ.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/76889?SessionId=125

HB 2409: Multi-county water districts; storage tax

In Brief: Extends CAWCD’s authority to levy the Water Storage Tax

Sponsor(s): Griffin

Last Action: Passed Senate Rules 3/28

Description: Extends CAWCD’s authority to levy the Water Storage Tax at 4 cents through 2029. The Water Storage Tax subsequently reduces to 3 cents in 2030 and expires in 2035. CAWCD had originally sought to extend the tax levy at the full 4 cents through 2044. AMWUA has requested that CAWCD provide more specificity regarding the intended use of the tax revenues, and that the legislation clarify that recovery is an authorized use of the Water Storage Tax. Prior to the introduction of HB 2409, AMWUA requested more specificity about how the Water Storage Tax revenues will be used and noted that it should be clarified that the tax can be utilized for recovery purposes. The Water Storage Tax funded the Arizona Water Banking Authority’s storage of excess Colorado River water to firm M&I supplies reduced by shortage, and the same tax should be authorized to fund the recovery of that stored water.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/76915?SessionId=125

HB 2459: WQARF; appropriation

In Brief: Appropriates $15 million from the general fund to the Water Quality Assurance Revolving Fund (WQARF).

Sponsor(s): Cano & 8 others

Last Action: Assigned to four House Committees 1/24

Description: Appropriates $20 million from the general fund in FY2021-22 to the Water Quality Assurance Revolving Fund. WQARF is a state-sponsored program established by the Legislature and administered by the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality to clean up hazardous soil and groundwater contamination.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/76957

HB 2460: Wells; permits; spacing rules

In Brief: Mandates water use metering and reporting for groundwater wells throughout the state

Sponsor(s): Cano & 5 others

Last Action: Assigned to House Committees 1/24. Did not receive a hearing.

Description: Requires that ADWR adopt rules governing the location of new and replacement wells >35 gpm located outside of AMAs, within groundwater basins that the Director determines to be experiencing declining groundwater levels.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/76958?SessionId=125

HB 2463: Well drilling; groundwater basins

In Brief: Establishes a well drilling moratorium in the Upper San Pedro and Verde Valley Subbasins

Sponsor(s): Cano

Last Action: Never assigned to Committee.

Description: Establishes a well drilling moratorium that prevents new wells in the Upper San Pedro and Verde Valley groundwater subbasins until the conclusion of the General Stream Adjudication unless a well is a replacement well or does not pump subflow.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/76961

HB 2467: Groundwater pumping; measuring; reporting

In Brief: Mandates water use metering and reporting for nonexempt groundwater wells throughout the state

Sponsor(s): Cano

Last Action: Never assigned to Committee.

Description: Requires monitoring and annual reporting for nonexempt groundwater wells throughout the state. Water users who irrigate 10 or fewer acres that are not part of a larger farming operation, or water users who pump <10 acre-feet per year for non-irrigation use are exempted from this requirement.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/76979

HB 2511: Subsequent irrigation non-expansion areas; procedures

In Brief: Modifies the procedures for determination of a new Irrigation Non-Expansion Area (INA)

Sponsor(s): Biasiucci

Last Action: Never assigned to Committee

Description: These measures introduce a number of modifications to the procedures for establishment of new irrigation non-expansion areas (INA). This proposal would allow ADWR to consider projected rates of groundwater withdrawal as part of the determination of a new INA. The bill also clarifies which entities are eligible to petition the State to create a new INA and would mandate that petitioners submit a groundwater model and hydrologic assessment using methodology approved by the ADWR Director. The language aligns with the suggested statutory changes presented by ADWR in the summer of 2017 during the Governor’s Water Solutions Conversations. AMWUA has previously supported this legislation.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/77010?SessionId=125

HB 2512: Colorado River water; local communities

In Brief: Prohibits transfers of P4 Colorado River water from Colorado River Communities

Sponsor(s): Cobb & Biasiucci

Last Action: Never assigned to committee.

Description: Prohibits transfer of on-river Priority 4 Colorado River water from outside of a “Colorado River community.”

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/77717

HB 2538: Water protection fund; appropriation

In Brief: Would appropriate $1 million from the state general fund for the Arizona Water Protection Fund.

Sponsor(s): Griffin

Last Action: Passed Senate Appropriations Committee 3/15

Description: This bill would appropriate $1 million from the state general fund in Fiscal Year 2022-23 to the Arizona Water Protection Fund. The Arizona Water Protection Fund is a state-run program administered by ADWR that funds projects to protect and enhance water quality and quantity in Arizona's rivers, streams, and riparian areas. Some of these efforts include revegetation, erosion control, channel stabilization, research, and water conservation. AMWUA has supported this legislation in previous years.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/77041?SessionId=125

HB 2549: Stored water; certificates; impact; accounting

In Brief: Suite of problematic amendments to Groundwater Code and Assured Water Supply Program

Sponsor(s): Griffin

Last Action: Held on House COW Calendar 2/24

Description: HB 2549 consolidates the legislative proposals of the Pinal AMA stakeholder group contained in HB 2256, HB 2258, and HB 2331. As noted, AMWUA and ADWR have serious concerns that these proposals undermine the Assured Water Supply Program.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/77063?SessionId=125

HB 2556: Water infrastructure finance; sunset repeal

In Brief: Aligns WIFA sunset date with parent agency, Office of Economic Opportunity

Sponsor(s): Griffin

Last Action: Signed by Governor 3/25

Description: Repeals the statutory sunset for the Water Infrastructure Finance Authority of Arizona (WIFA), which will now be included under the sunset review of its governing body, the Arizona Office of Economic Opportunity (OEO). The next sunset review for the Arizona OEO and its Boards is July 1, 2023. WIFA supports this alignment.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/77049?SessionId=125

HB 2619: Rainwater harvesting program

In Brief: Establishes the Rainwater Harvesting Grant Program

Sponsor(s): Liguori & 11 others

Last Action: Passed House NREW Committee 3/23

Description: Originally introduced as HB 2812, this strike-everything amendment establishes the Rainwater Harvesting Grant Program within the Arizona Department of Water Resources. Grants are available to Program applicants at two Levels: Level 1 Grants may be used to reimburse up to 50% of a simple or passive rainwater harvesting system, up to $500. Level 2 Grants may fund up to a maximum of $2,000 for an “active and more complex” project, including installation of a rainwater harvesting system and storage tank. Various routine landscaping activities are identified and excluded from eligibility for grant funding. HB 2619 appropriates $1 million to ADWR to fund the Program.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/77881

HB 2661: Rural management areas

In Brief: Allows a County Board of Supervisors to establish a Rural Management Area to prescribe water management practices and other regulations.

Sponsor(s): Cobb & Biasiucci

Last Action: Never assigned to Committee.

Description: Authorizes a County Board of Supervisors to establish a new type of water management jurisdiction called a Rural Management Area if a particular groundwater basin or subbasin meet certain criteria, generally related to groundwater depletion. For any Rural Management Area that is formed, a seven-person Council shall be appointed by the Governor. The Rural Management Area Council must adopt a Management Goal, Management Plan, and voluntary or mandatory best management practices designed to reduce groundwater withdrawals in the area. Any proposed actions to be implemented by ADWR in the Management Plan must be submitted for approval by the Department. HB 2661 also establishes the “Department of Water Resources Heritage Fund” consisting of monies deposited from the State Lottery, to support ADWR administration of the Rural Management Area.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/77717

HB 2725: Arizona Water Authority

In Brief: Establishes the Arizona Water Authority

Sponsor(s): Bowers & Griffin

Last Action: Assigned to House NREW 2/9

Description: HB 2725 establishes the “Arizona Water Authority.” This bill is a placeholder for legislation under development by the Governor’s Office and House & Senate leadership. It is anticipated to restructure the Drought Mitigation Revolving Fund Board that was established in 2021 and create an entity to fund and oversee large augmentation projects.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/77790

HB 2761: Water efficient plumbing fixtures

In Brief: Updates to Arizona's plumbing code to require water efficient fixtures.

Sponsor(s): Mathis & 9 others

Last Action: Assigned to House NREW 2/9. Did not receive a committee hearing.

Description: Arizona adopted water-efficiency standards for indoor plumbing fixtures in 1992 which have since been superseded by various federal laws and requirements. This bill would update Arizona’s water-efficiency standards to align with criteria established by the WaterSense Program, a public-private partnership between industry, utilities, and regulators. AMWUA has supported this legislation each year since the 2019 session.

Link: https://apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview/77829

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Water is essential for life. It supplies food, generates energy, and creates jobs. The wellbeing of our communities and economies depends on it. In a desert, we are acutely aware that we must continue to plan, invest, and develop forward-thinking policy today to ensure safe, reliable, and sustainable water supplies for the future.