Back in early April—when most of us still hadn’t absorbed the immediate effects of COVID-19, much less the virus’ long arch—MPC shared news about the Illinois State Water Plan, which is being updated for the first time since 1994. In the April blog post, we promised to keep you up to date on opportunities for the public to weigh in on this important plan. Now is the time: until January 15, a public survey is available in English and Spanish for anyone who wants to provide input on the key issues that the Plan should address. In addition, we encourage you to participate in one of three virtual public meetings that the State will host on December 1, 2, and 3, 2020.
Complete details about the public meetings are available on the State Water Plan website, along with background information on the Plan and planning process.
It’s notable that since April, the State has engaged MPC and numerous other nonprofit partners in helping to shape the initial selection of priority issues to be addressed in the Plan, as well as its overall goals. The Plan’s goals are the following:
- Provide policy and program guidance in water resources management
- Ensure that the water resources of the state are available to all in Illinois regardless of race, income, housing status, or geography
- Ensure that remediation efforts enhance and protect water quality and supply for all Illinoisans and wildlife
Although COVID-19 delayed the planning process, and in particular the timing of this initial round of public outreach, the State Water Plan Task Force remains committed to updating the plan in 2021. The Task Force further plans to revise the State Water Plan every five to ten years, adding new issues as previous issues are addressed.
Illinois has the opportunity to create a bold, inclusive vision for Illinois’ water resources—but to do that, we need the input of residents and stakeholders across Illinois. With a strong State Water Plan developed through an inclusive planning process, Illinois will protect the public’s health and the environment; ensure clean, safe drinking water is available to all residents; and support a strong economy by creating thousands of jobs to rebuild the infrastructure needed to deliver, treat, and manage our water resources. Please take a few moments to take the survey, plan to attend one of the public meetings, and share these opportunities with your colleagues and neighbors.
Take the State Water Plan Survey
Llene la encuesta del Plan Estatal de Agua