Editor’s note: The Delaware River Basin Commission’s (DRBC) 60th anniversary was recognized during its fourth-quarter public business meeting on Dec. 8. A new timeline celebrating the DRBC’s 60 years of water resources management may be viewed at timeline.drbc.gov.
Steve Tambini, DRBC Executive Director:
At the November 2, 1961, ceremonial signing of the Delaware River Basin Compact, President John F. Kennedy referred to the formation of the DRBC as a “bold venture.” I am here today, 60 years later, to say that the venture is working. The Commission, through interstate planning, science, engineering and management, has successfully improved and protected water quality, ensured water availability and resiliency for diverse water users and stands ready to meet future water resource challenges in our Basin.
Brigadier General Thomas Tickner, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers North Atlantic Division Commander:
The history of this Commission is storied and impressive. From its beginnings, the DRBC became a model in water quality control, soon reversing decades of pollution suffered throughout the lower Delaware River. For the millions of Americans who rely on the Delaware River to provide clean drinking water, agricultural and commercial use, recreation, river faring and more, the DRBC is an essential partner in their everyday lives.
Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf:
Since its inception, the Delaware River Basin Commission has encouraged people to find the need for federal-interstate coordinating to lead the fight in conserving, developing and administering the Delaware River Basin’s resource, and to preserve and enhance the value of its scenic and recreational location. I commend the Delaware River Basin Commission for their service to the Commonwealth by enhancing public welfare through the means of comprehensive planning, water supply allocation, management of the water resources, and more.
New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy:
As Governor, it is my pleasure to commend and recognize the Delaware River Basin Commission for its vision to provide trusted, effective and coordinated management of our shared water resources. The Delaware River Basin Commission is guided by its core values of service to the public, respect for the Basin’s water resources, and professionalism defined by high ethical standards and accountability.
New York Governor Kathy Hochul:
Over the last six decades, the Delaware River Basin Commission has brought stability to the region’s water management. From conservation initiatives, to water quality protection, to flood management, the Commission has played an integral role in safeguarding a water supply millions of New Yorkers rely on. The Commission’s stewardship of the Basin during a turbulent time for our global climate is commendable.
Delaware Governor Carney:
On behalf of the nearly one million Delawareans who have benefitted from the DRBC’s stewardship, I thank you for providing trusted leadership on the many issues that affect the river basin region. It takes extraordinary dedication to manage the 13,539 square miles of this watershed, but your efforts help support the 600,000 jobs and $22 billion in economic activity that the river basin generates. Our river and bay now support year-round fish and wildlife populations, extensive recreation opportunities, parks and greenways for residents to enjoy.
Jesse Smith, research curator at Philadelphia’s Science History Institute:
The DRBC’s formation was a critical inflection point, recognizing the need for basin-scale water protection The DRBC donated a large 3-D model of the basin from 1964 and other historical materials to the Institute.