Regionalization: RCAP’s Recommendations for Water and Wastewater Policy

In May 2021, RCAP released a new report, “Regionalization: RCAP’s Recommendations for Water and Wastewater Policy,” which focuses on local, state, and federal policies that encourage and those that hinder regional solutions and includes recommendations at all levels of government to better support regionalization moving forward.

The report highlights 22 recommendations from RCAP that should be integrated into policy decision-making. This research highlights:

  • Top-line recommendations that can improve regionalization support at all levels of government;
  • Two key takeaways: the need for flexibility and the need for more funding for regionalization effort;
  • Provides examples and perspectives from work happening on the ground
  • Findings from a compilation of state policies that impact regionalization for drinking water and wastewater systems; information is available in Appendix A

RCAP virtually unveiled this research to over 160 attendees on May 13, 2021. This event highlighted RCAP’s second research report in our series about regionalization, which aims to understand what types of policies at all levels of government have helped or hindered regional solutions for water and wastewater collaboration across the U.S. This event concentrated on our recommendations for state-level decision-makers.

We heard from the experiences of five different states: California, Florida, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Texas, who spoke about what they have put in place to help support the various forms of regionalization, from the informal, like FlaWARN’s effective disaster response and resource sharing to the more formal, like CA’s ability to require physical system consolidation when public health is at risk. The event also included a facilitated panel where attendees learned more about why states have chosen to prioritize regional solutions, the mechanics of how and lessons learned along the way. You can view the event here.

Below are three versions of the report, the full report, the executive summary, and the one-pager. The executive summary provides a condensed overview of the full report and recommendations, and the one-pager provides a high-level overview of the recommendations.