Senator Joe Schiavoni Testifies In Favor Of Senate Joint Resolution 3
SJR3 would help fund local water and sewer improvement projects without raising taxes
February 09, 2016
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COLUMBUS—Today, Senate Minority Leader Joe Schiavoni (D-Boardman) testified before the Senate Finance Committee on Senate Joint Resolution 3 (SJR3), legislation he introduced to protect Ohio’s drinking water, lakes, and streams. SJR3 would permit the issuance of state bonds to expand sewer and water improvement projects for municipalities, counties, townships, and other government entities.

If Ohio voters approve this resolution, the General Assembly would be able to authorize up to $100 million per fiscal year over a 10-year period for sewer and water capital improvements. This would be a total investment of $1 billion. It would not raise taxes.

“From Lake Erie to the Ohio River, water quality issues affect every corner of our state,” said Leader Schiavoni. “Unlike pothole filled roads and crumbling bridges that are easy to see, our underground infrastructure often goes unnoticed by the general public until something goes wrong. “ 

There is significant data to support the urgent need for water and sewer improvements. The most recent report card from the Ohio Chapter of the American Society of Civil Engineers gives Ohio drinking water a “D+” and its waste water systems a “C-.”  The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency estimates Ohio’s need for investment in wastewater infrastructure is $14.2 billion, plus an additional $12.6 billion for capital improvements over twenty years.

“With the lack of sufficient resources, both locally and federally, our communities are often forced to maintain and upgrade a vast network of deteriorating underground infrastructure on their own,” said Senator Schiavoni. “The State must make this critical investment to protect the health and well-being of Ohioans.”

Senate Joint Resolution 3 has bipartisan co-sponsors and the support of U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown.

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