Governor Brown’s latest budget proposal has some new language related to clean drinking water.
The proposal acknowledges that many of California’s disadvantaged communities rely on contaminated groundwater and lack the resources to operate and maintain safe drinking water systems, but it stops short of any additional funding to fix the problem.
Jonathan Nelson with the advocacy group Community Water Center says this acknowledgement may seem modest now, but it could lead to bigger things.
"Language in the budget at this stage is about sending signals about what is important and what needs to be worked on as we now start and move into the budget process," Nelson says.
The next step, he says, is to determine how much funding is needed and how to make it sustainable. He says he and other advocates hope to have some specific dollar amounts ready for later budget proposals.