§24-2H-2. Legislative findings.
(a) The provision of safe drinking water and the collection and treatment of wastewater has resulted in a drastic reduction in the incidence of disease, increase in life expectancy, and other major public health advancements.
(b) Development of water and wastewater infrastructure has advanced economic development through increased production and productivity within West Virginia’s economic sectors and commercial expansion geographically throughout the state.
(c) A number of water and wastewater utilities face substantial capital investment needs to maintain and replace aging infrastructure with limited financial resources.
(d) For some water and wastewater utilities, adequately addressing infrastructure needs may adversely affect their ability to maintain reasonable rates and ability to borrow funds to address such needs.
(e) Many water and wastewater utilities have experienced a loss of customers resulting from decline in populations served which has created an additional rate burden on the remaining population.
(f) Failure to timely address infrastructure needs has resulted in the inability of water and wastewater utilities to adequately serve customers and maintain regulatory compliance, thereby threatening human health and hindering economic growth.
(g) West Virginia needs a comprehensive plan to confront the financial, organizational, and regulatory challenges faced by water and wastewater utilities in the state to ensure that all citizens of West Virginia have access to safe drinking water and adequate and safe wastewater treatment.