Advocacy and Research

Advocacy and research are essential to RCAP’s mission of elevating rural voices and building local capacity to improve quality of life.

Our Advocacy

Advocating for the needs of rural America has become more important than ever before. We advocate for rural people and communities who might not have the resources and time to connect with the actions and decisions happening in Washington that affect their lives. RCAP advocates for policies at the federal level that will positively affect rural lives, educates policymakers on important issues, and brings together coalitions of organizations focused on rural issues.  Our work continues to make a lasting impact on policy and funding that will benefit rural America for years to come.

Learn more about RCAP’s current policy priorities here.

RCAP Applauds Passage of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act of 2021

Washington, DC (November 8, 2021) — Today, the Rural Community Assistance Partnership (RCAP) applauds the passage of the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA). We especially commend the creation of several new resources and investments that provide communities access to critical technical assistance and training needed for improving drinking and wastewater programs and infrastructure. Also, increased funding for both the Drinking Water, and Clean Water State Revolving Funds – including provisions for loan forgiveness, and decreased non-federal cost matching requirements – will allow many more small systems to benefit from this federal funding.

Policy Corner

Check out the latest federal policy updates from RCAP’s advocacy team.


RCAP’s Annual Fly-In event in Washington D.C. brings in representatives from our 6 regional partners from across the country to generate awareness for rural issues on Capitol Hill and to meet with government agencies.

Our Research

Data, information and stories on important topics affecting rural communities not only help build greater awareness for the issues, they also help us understand the efficacy and impact of our work. We undertake research on a wide range of topics including: regionalization, economic development, technical, managerial, and financial challenges faced by communities, water utilities and more. We work both independently and in collaboration with like-minded partners. Some of our research thus far has been used by policymakers, led to additional research initiatives, and created new partnerships to better support the communities we serve.

Developing Regional Economic Connectivity: Key Factors and Strategies for Urban and Rural Communities
Regionalization: RCAP’s Recommendations for Water and Wastewater Policy
10 Lessons Learned from Rural Water and Wastewater Partnerships
Special Edition of Rural Matters
Customer Debt and Declining Revenues: The Financial Impacts of COVID-19 on Small Community Water Systems
Impact of COVID-19 on Rural and Tribal Water and Wastewater Systems