State lawmakers: Enough is enough. Delaware needs clean water

Poisoned wells in Millsboro.
And the problem isn’t just toxic pollution from industrial sources: Thousands of New Castle Countians deal with routine flooding and drainage problems right in their back yards Toxic algae blooms in the Newark reservoir forced the cancellation of a triathlon due to concerns for swimmers’ health Communities in Sussex County don’t have safe drinking water – and to make matters worse, some are getting help far sooner than others Delaware’s beaches routinely shut down after rainstorms due to elevated bacteria levels and runoff Residents of small communities like Ellendale face chronic issues with drinking water quality and wastewater infrastructure In New Castle, Kent, and Sussex Counties, water infrastructure – some dating back to the Nixon administration – is aging, crumbling, and risking contamination of the environment and our drinking water There’s no avoiding the fact that our quality of life, our health, and our economy rely on clean water, but Delaware chronically underfunds water investments: currently, we fall short by $100 million each year.
That’s why we’re sponsoring House Bill 270, bipartisan legislation that would invest comprehensively in clean water for Delaware.
Altogether, those “little things” represent a huge part of Delaware’s water pollution problem.
HB 270 would create a Clean Water Trust to begin clearing a backlog of projects across Delaware dealing with water quality, infrastructure, and flooding.
Under our plan, many low-income and working Delawareans – about 1 in 7 eligible taxpayers, and half of all Delawareans – would pay nothing at all.
Ironically, many people pay more for bottled water each month.
But when the State is distributing bottled water to protect entire towns from health problems and birth defects, when we’re afraid to swim in local ponds because blue-green algae is neurotoxic, and when the roads we drive on are flooded and washed out, leaders need to ask themselves whether their top priority is politics or our future.
One way or another, we will pay for our water problems: the question is whether we pay a little bit today, or ask our kids, our health, and our economy to pay a lot tomorrow.
If you believe that tap water should stay drinkable, that local fish should be edible, that water should be swimmable, and that washed-out roads should be drivable, call your legislators and tell them to support HB 270.

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