The Coalition identifies watershed-wide policy priorities each year through a nomination and adoption process with its members.
The CDRW 2018 Priorities are:
The Coalition for the Delaware River Watershed will support watershed-wide and transparent planning in the Watershed that comprehensively addresses its biggest challenges, including promoting the development of a vision for the watershed, empowering an engaged constituency, and initiatives with basin-wide significance including the Delaware River Basin Restoration Program (DRBRP) and the Flexible Flow Management Program (FFMP2017).
As such, the Coalition will:
• Convene member organizations working in the watershed with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to develop a framework and governance structure for the DRBRP and advocate for accountability in the adoption of this planning framework.
• Facilitate watershed-wide efforts to develop a vision for the watershed and engage a broad constituency by hosting outreach events, including the 2018 Delaware River Watershed Forum.
• Champion increased leadership from the four basin states aimed at watershed-wide collaboration and planning by partnering with the governors of the states to come together to create a new vision for a healthy Delaware River watershed.
• Support implementation of the FFMP2017 that effectively ensures the protection of water quality, aquatic habitat, public safety, and economic revitalization.
See our BluePrint webpage for more information on planning throughout the Watershed.
Federal Policy & Funding
The Coalition for the Delaware River Watershed will support federal policies and spending that promote a healthy Watershed. The Coalition will leverage efforts in the watershed by presenting a unified voice to ensure federal policies and spending support restoration and protection of the Delaware River Watershed through direct advocacy, outreach and education, and grassroots organizing throughout the region and in Washington, DC. The Coalition will educate members of Congress on key policy issues and other legislative matters through briefings, in-district engagements, and its annual Delaware River Watershed Hill Day.
The Coalition’s federal priorities include:
• Delaware River Basin Restoration Program
• Partnership Wild and Scenic River Program
• Land and Water Conservation Fund
• Defense of the Clean Water Act and funding
• 2018 Farm Bill
State Policy & Funding*
The Coalition will support state clean water policies and funding for the watershed in the four basin states. It will do so through its State Outreach Lead Initiative, which will work with coalition members to identify state-specific priorities that advance clean water funding and policies. This will include leading efforts on top priorities, building capacity for existing clean water funding campaigns, and sharing information and resources among members.
*state specific priorities will be identified by State Outreach Leads in New Jersey and Pennsylvania.
In New Jersey the Coalition will work to:
Promote and defend funding for the New Jersey’s water and conservation program
*support for stormwater utilities falls under funding priority
Support restoring New Jersey’s contribution to the Delaware River Commission to the full “fair share” level of $893,000
Reverse the rollback of regulations by the previous administration that severely threaten water quality including the Freshwater Wetlands Rules, Septic Density Regulations for the Highlands, and Flood Hazard Rules
Advocate for appointments to the Highlands Council and Pinelands Commission who support the mission of the Regional Master Plan (RMP) or Comprehensive Master Plan (CMP), respectively
In Pennsylvania the Coalition will work to:
Advance a dedicated source of funding for clean water programs in Pennsylvania
Promote and defend funding for the Commonwealth’s water and conservation programs
Support restoring Pennsylvania’s contribution to the Delaware River Basin Commission to the full “fair share” level of $893,000
As State Outreach Lead, Friends of the Upper Delaware River will provide support for regional efforts implemented at the state-level including engaging DRBC decree parties on the Flexible Flow Management Plan.
As State Outreach Lead, DNS will drive state level clean water strategies supporting the Coalitions priorities through the Clean Water Campaign and integrate messaging with Coalition.
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
The Coalition for the Delaware River Watershed is committed to fostering Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) by working to ensure underrepresented, underserved, and overburdened communities have a voice in the watershed and share equitably in the benefits of clean water. Through a workgroup on DEI, the Coalition will strive to identify and advance new partnerships, policies, and opportunities for engagement.
Photograph by Nicholas A. Tonelli.