Washington, D.C. — Henderson Brown, interim general manager of DC Water, issued the following statement in response to the White House’s budget proposal eliminating funding for the DC Clean Rivers Project:

“If the federal government reduces funding by $14 million then that’s $14 million more in new revenue we need to raise from our local customers. The Clean Rivers program is a federal mandate and we are replacing a combined sewer system that was installed more than a century ago by the federal government. It is only right that the federal government continue to contribute towards this important environmental project, as it has since Day 1 of this effort back in 2005. I strongly encourage House and Senate leaders who review this budget to restore funding for this essential program.  DC Water will work closely with Congresswoman Norton, Mayor Muriel Bowser, the DC Council and members of the community to advocate for this investment.”

DC Clean Rivers, a $2.7 billion effort, calls for building 100-foot deep tunnels, sewers, diversion structures and green infrastructure to divert combined sewage and stormwater runoff from the rivers of Washington, DC for treatment at the Blue Plains Advanced Wastewater Treatment Plant. The next segment of the project opens March 23 and will eliminate more than 80 percent of combined sewage overflows to the Anacostia River.