WESTERVILLE, Ohio — Earlier this month, Congress approved $1.1 trillion in spending that contains $2.6 million for the implementation of the National Ground-Water Monitoring Network, a program of which the National Ground Water Association (NGWA) is a strong advocate.

On Dec. 16, President Obama signed the bill funding the federal government through fiscal year 2015.

The money, according to a press release, allows the U.S. Geological Survey to provide cost-share grants to states in the form of cooperative agreements to upgrade monitoring networks to national standards and to incorporate wells into the network.

The funding also will support additional work by USGS to manage the network and provide data access to the public through an Internet portal, continued the release.

According to the release, NGWA led the effort with allied organizations and coalition members to obtain funding for the network, which is a significant achievement for the Association and its members.

“This funding is the result of nearly a decade-long effort led by NGWA to raise awareness of the critical role groundwater plays as a natural resource through the implementation of a nationwide monitoring network,” said NGWA Chief Executive Officer Kevin McCray, CAE.