The Department of Public Health has been criticized by both the EPA and some lawmakers for failing to distribute nearly a half billion dollars to communities for clean drinking water.
Supporters of the bill say people who need clean water would be better served if the State Water Resources Control Board ran the program.
But opponents say the water board lacks a public health focus, and moving the program would cause further problems.
Democratic Assemblymember Henry Perea, the bill’s author, says he’s working with Governor Jerry Brown’s administration to address those concerns.
“Really what we’re doing is creating greater accountability in shifting all of our water quality programs under one roof," says Perea. "Instead of having our water quality programs siloed now everybody will be talking to each other. We think that will create greater accountability and greater efficiency within the overall system.”