HB 189, which would provide $1.3M for GenX study, passes House vote

RALEIGH, NC (WECT) - A four-page bill aimed at providing more money to study water quality in the Cape Fear River passed at Wednesday's state House of Representatives meeting in Raleigh.

Just minutes before 6 p.m., the House voted unanimously to pass House Bill 189, which will direct $1.3 million to the NC Department of Environmental Quality to pay for water quality sampling, permitting backlogs, and measuring the air and water for GenX.

The bill, which will go to the Senate for approval, also requires the Department of Health and Human Services to work with the science advisory board to establish target concentrations of compounds like GenX.

Representative Ted Davis Jr. (R-New Hanover County) said HB 189 represents an important victory in the GenX contamination issue.

"Especially with the unanimous vote on the house floor, I am just ecstatic," said Davis, who was one of the bill's primary sponsors. "It shows the people of this state that the House of Representatives is very serious about this problem, and we're not just talking the talk, we're walking the walk."

Other notable parts of the bill include:

  • A mandate that NCDEQ communicate water quality data back and forth with Georgia, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia.
  • A mandate that the UNC School of Government study liability of water utility authorities for distributing contaminated water to consumers.

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