Key concepts for comprehensive state water planning
In a national review of state water planning efforts conducted in 2000, eight states were found to have developed comprehensive water resources plans. The concept is gaining support as nearly half of the states nationwide were studying or considering their development (Kundell et al., 2000). Georgia formally began exploring comprehensive state water planning through the passage of Senate Resolution 142 during the 2001 legislative session, which created a Joint Comprehensive Water Plan Study Committee and Water Plan Advisory Committee. In the 2003 legislative session, there are two bills proposing comprehensive state water planning legislation. These competing bills reflect the broad debate among state and local elected officials, state agency representatives, business/industry and agribusiness, the environmental community, and the media on this topic. Although there is not one perfect approach to comprehensive water planning, there are key concepts (authority, coordination and communication, inclusiveness, accountability, and efficiency) to ensure a quality product that is relevant to government, state agencies, and the public.