The U.S. Senate Environment and Public Works Committee recently issued a report on Senate Bill S692 Water Infrastructure Flexibility Act with text supporting permeable pavements. The Senate report that accompanies the bill, Senate Report 115-87, includes language directing the US Environmental Protection Agency “to promote green infrastructure (measures like landscaping or permeable pavements that reduce storm water flows into sewer systems or surface waters) by conducting outreach and training through the agency's regional offices."
The bill defines green infrastructure as “the range of measures that use plant or soil systems, permeable pavement or other permeable surfaces or substrates, stormwater harvest and reuse, or landscaping to store, infiltrate, or evapotranspirate stormwater and reduce flows to sewer systems or to surface waters.”
The proposed legislation uses the term ‘permeable pavement’ offered previously by ICPI in support of the 2008 transportation funding legislation known as Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP-21) and Transportation and Housing and Urban Development department appropriations in 2017. This exposure in bills means that permeable pavement is becoming a common term among legislators on Capitol Hill.
Introduced by Senate Environment and Public Works Committee member Deb Fischer (R-Nebraska), S692 has bipartisan support. There is similar legislation moving through the House of Representatives. The chances are reasonable that a version of S692 will become law in the current session of Congress. ICPI will monitor and support the legislation as it continues gaining consideration. ICPI congratulates Senator Fischer for her leadership on water infrastructure concerns.