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Gov. John Hickenlooper signs graywater bill at CSU

May 15, 2013
By Tony Phifer

Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper was on campus Wednesday afternoon to sign into law House Bill 1044, which legalizes the use of graywater in the state.

Hickenlooper chose CSU for the bill signing because CSU engineering professors Larry Roesner and Sybil Sharvelle, internationally recognized water experts, helped write the bill and were primary players in the battle to push the bill through the legislature. The bill was sponsored by Rep. Randy Fischer, D-Fort Collins, and Sen. Gail Schwartz, D-Snowmass Village.

Colorado is the only western state without legislative clearance that allows graywater (water from showers, baths, washing machines, etc.) to be recycled for use in toilets and watering lawns in single- and multi-family dwellings. The science-based technology is expected to reduce demand by 30 percent and save 33,000 acre feet of water annually by 2020.

New engineering building hosts event

The brief ceremony, which took place in the newly constructed Suzanne and Walter Scott, Jr., Bioengineering Building, included remarks from CSU President Tony Frank, Hickenlooper and Fischer. CSU Chancellor Michael Martin, Sen. John Kefalas, D-Fort Collins, and Rep. Joann Ginal, D-Fort Collins, also attended.

Hickenlooper praised Roesner, Sharvelle and Fischer for their roles in crafting the bill and getting it passed. “This is the kind of work the state should be doing,” he said. “We now have some of the most innovative uses for graywater in the country.”

Fischer lauds CSU, engineering professors

Fischer said finding ways to better utilize the state’s water is a “sacred responsibility” of legislators.

“This (bill signing) is recognition for all the great work CSU does,” he said. “This is a great day for CSU and the state of Colorado.”

Busy day for the governor

In addition to this bill signing, Hickenlooper made several other stops around the state, including signing a health-care-related bill at Poudre Valley Hospital and the groundbreaking ceremony for the new Woodward facility east of Old Town Fort Collins.