Goal & Issue Summary


Encourage responsible water quality goals and water development policies to meet the increasing demand for reliable water supplies.

Issue Summaries


Position: The California Chamber of Commerce supports measured approaches to ensuring that groundwater and surface water are managed in a way that supports the many needs of Californians without damaging the state’s productive agricultural sector and local communities dependent on agriculture.


Stormwater Runoff

Position: The California Chamber of Commerce believe that other solutions can avoid unnecessary risks and achieve water quality benefits.

Using an NPDES permit to regulate runoff from commercial properties is not the most efficient way to address water quality concerns. The benefits must match the risks that are presented to these properties. Regional projects that treat businesses and property owners as partners may be preferable approaches to both reduce stormwater pollution impacts and utilize stormwater flows as part of the region’s water supply.

Stormwater Runoff

Water Rights

Position: With something as fundamental as the system through which all Californians receive their water, policymakers must make strategic improvements that make the system more nimble, efficient and predictable, and avoid disruptions.

Water Rights

Water Supply

Position: The California Chamber of Commerce supports a comprehensive solution to the state’s chronic water shortage to ensure all Californians have access to clean and affordable water. Conservation, desalination, recycling, reuse, water use efficiency, conveyance and storage should be pursued vigorously to help increase water supply.

Water Supply

Major Victories

Protecting Vital Public Works Projects by opposing an initiative rejected by voters in 2016 that would have delayed or stopped vitally needed infrastructure projects all over the state—including water reliability projects, road safety and bridge repairs, university and college buildings—as well as impeded the state’s ability to make emergency repairs after a natural disaster (Proposition 53).

Promoting Availability and Security of California Water Supplies

  • Supported landmark federal legislation in 2016 containing much-needed funding for water projects and allowing water regulators to make the best use of water to benefit all parts of the state (S. 612).

Improving Management of California Water Supply

  • Supported follow-up legislation in 2015 to the landmark 2014 groundwater management law to improve judicial proceedings in comprehensive adjudications of groundwater rights without changing the law or existing water rights.
  • In 2015, stopped misguided proposals to increase the excise tax on water use, publicize a business’ water and energy use and require labeling of agricultural products irrigated with cleaned wastewater from oil fields (SB 789, AB 1520, ABX2 14).

Investing in Water Supply Reliability

  • Supported voter-approved Proposition 1 in 2014, providing funding for needed water storage projects, enabling the state to save in wet years for the inevitable droughts.
  • Preserved ability for voters to consider a legislative and bond package putting the state on a pathway to long-term water supply reliability and ensuring a safe drinking water supply (AB 1265). Instrumental in developing that package in 2009 (SBX7 1, SBX7 2, SBX7 6, SBX7 7, SBX7 8).
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Brenda Bass

Brenda Bass
Policy Advocate