Message from the New President-11/23/2015
I want to talk to you today about hope. As a mother, and grandmother, my dearest hope is that our treasured children and grandchildren can once again play and recreate, without fear, in the once pristine waters of our Inland Bays.
What will it take?
On the heels of last year’s “Clean Water for Delaware” initiative, I can tell you that Governor Markell and our DNREC Secretary, David Small, are both serious about cleaning up Delaware’s polluted waters, among the most contaminated in the nation. Gov. Markell has called the situation of Delaware’s waters “embarrassing and unacceptable.”
A major sign of hope involves new clean water draft legislation—“Clean Water for DE Act”. The draft bill would impose a water fee on property owners, between $45-85 annually, depending on the assessed value of a single-family property. Additional requirements apply to commercial and public properties.
Is this not a small price to pay for the future welfare of our children playing in the bays?
Approximately $30 million could be raised by the Clean Water Act, leveraged to $120 million in total financing. The legislation would create a trust fund, overseen by a nine-member board of directors. The draft legislation is scheduled to be introduced in early January when the 148th General Assembly returns to work. The legislation could be introduced as early as Dec. 10 in a scheduled House pre-file.
This legislation is critical to our state. We at the Inland Bays Foundation have worked for years to see the light at the end of this tunnel. Our citizens have been listening; our DNREC officials have been listening; and our Governor has already thrown his hat into the ring. . Now I am counting on our elected state legislators to listen and pass the Clean Water Act.
If you would like to get involved in our fight for clean water, we need you! On-line membership forms are available on our web site. Membership is only $35 a year, and our cause for clean water is on the line. For our children, for our tourists, and for our residents—we need to all join together at this urgent juncture to ensure the clean-up of our contaminated waters.
President, Inland Bays Foundation