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About Us

The Safe, Clean Water Program works directly with communities, municipalities, agencies, and individuals to create projects that capture and clean stormwater, while also providing quality of life improvements.

The Program is essential, especially as climate change causes unpredictable and destructive weather patterns, such as droughts and historic storms, that pollute our waterways.

The Program was created in 2018, when LA County residents recognized the potential to absorb more of our stormwater and voted for Measure W. It provides funding, expertise, and partnership to community groups, municipalities, and individuals looking to capture and clean stormwater, helping to increase our local water supply and safeguard water quality. The Program also ensures that we comply with the Clean Water Act and fulfills our obligation to take action to protect our communities.

What sets the Safe, Clean Water Program apart is its collaborative approach to addressing LA’s water needs. It invites communities to help design and implement local infrastructure improvements and prioritizes nature-based approaches, such as green spaces and recreation areas, that combat heat and improve neighborhoods. Because of this, the Safe, Clean Water Program not only safeguards our local water but also improves the daily lives of LA County residents in meaningful ways beyond infrastructure.

Education and outreach are also key components of the Program, which creates green jobs and has a K-12 initiative to create young environmental stewards.

Since 2018, the Program has generated over $670 million for more than 100 projects that increase our water supply and safeguard our waterways. Most of that funding has been invested to uplift, revitalize, and add greenery to communities that have historically faced over-paving and disinvestment.

It is important to note that the Program’s goal is not to capture every single drop of water that falls in a rainy year. Doing so would not only be impractical, it would damage our local ecosystems. Rather, the Safe, Clean Water Program is designed to steadily increase LA County’s capacity to clean and store water year after year in a way that honors the natural resilience of our region. This approach will allow us to enjoy our rivers, beaches, and parks, while also protecting our waterways, for generations to come.

Our Approach

The Safe, Clean Water Program not only safeguards our local water but also improves the daily lives of LA County residents in meaningful ways beyond infrastructure.

Make it clean

One of our main goals is to keep toxins and trash out of our region’s waterways.

Make it green

Capturing more of our local stormwater with nature-based solutions that make LA greener and more sustainable.

Make it for everyone

Most of the Program’s projects uplift communities that have historically faced over-paving and disinvestment.

Who Plays a Part

The Safe, Clean Water Program takes a collaborative approach to LA’s water needs. LA County administrators, engineers, and scientists work with local watershed coordinators, nonprofit organizations, municipalities, agencies, elected officials, and residents to make it all work.

How the Funding Works

LA County generates about $285 million per year from a special tax on private properties that cause runoff pollution, and the money is divided three ways. Half goes to a Regional Program that serves the needs of our local watersheds. Another 40% goes to cities and municipal governments to clean and capture stormwater via the Municipal Program. Finally, 10% funds administration, staffing for technical assistance, workforce training, and other services managed through the District Program.

The Passage of Measure W

As accelerating cycles of extreme drought, wildfire, and flooding began to challenge the sustainability of our way of life, LA County residents recognized an opportunity to make better use of our own local resources. In 2018, a super majority of voters passed Measure W to create the Safe, Clean Water Program. It is now our responsibility to fulfill Measure W’s promise by protecting our waterways and capturing more of our local stormwater.