S. 1570 would authorize the Department of the Interior, acting through the Bureau of Reclamation (BOR), to use federal land and facilities to convey water to recharge aquifers. Under current law, if federal land or facilities are needed for that purpose, the nonfederal partner involved in the conveyance may need Congressional authorization or federal permits. The bill aims to ease requirements that may arise in those situations by authorizing BOR to:
Redirect water available under a water contract to recharge an aquifer upon request from the water contractor and to negotiate new water contracts to convey water to recharge an aquifer,
Use excess capacity at federal facilities to deliver nonproject water to recharge an aquifer if requested by local stakeholders, and
Convey water using land administered by the Bureau of Land Management to recharge an aquifer if the authority to access that land to convey water for other purposes already exists.
CBO assumes that S.1570 will be enacted in 2020. Using information provided by BOR, CBO estimates that any change in federal administrative costs to implement the bill, which are subject to appropriation, would be less than $500,000 over the 2020-2024 period.
Enacting S. 1570 could increase offsetting receipts (which are recorded as reductions in direct spending) because water contractors pay to convey water when they use BOR facilities. Using information from BOR, CBO estimates that any increase in offsetting receipts from implementing the bill would be less than $500,000 over the 2020-2029 period.