As local water costs mount, Tennessee environmental commissioner seeks more loan funds

(Photo: Larry McCormack / The Tennessean) State environmental officials asked Tennessee Gov.
Bill Lee for more funding to repair and upgrade municipal water and sewer infrastructure on Tuesday.
Without the required maintenance, old pipes can burst, sewage can back up and cities can’t grow.
A focus on rural, small towns One of the Lee administration’s top priorities is rural economic development, which became the focus of discussions.
Lee, reiterating his priority, asked how the department selects utilities.
It sometimes picks small towns for loans, he said, but they don’t always accept because they would have to increase customer rates.
This year, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency granted Tennessee an additional $13 million, Salyers said, but he needed the additional state money to take advantage of the federal funds.
Tennessee needs $15.6 billion for aging sewer and drinking water systems through 2040, according to a state report released in December.
Typically, TDEC makes 20 to 30 low- or no-interest loans from the State Revolving Fund each year.
“I think there is some real opportunity there for us to advance your vision," Salyers told Lee.

Lowell water contamination effects not clear

The fire college trained using that foam for years.
“They said it’s very unlikely you’re going to get cancer.
No one knows,” Flores said.
Flores’ is one of five residential wells that tested above the maximum level allowed in drinking water by the Environmental Protection Agency.
Tests on the well in August and September showed elevated levels of the compounds, also referred to as per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS).
After the college well tested above the limits, the Florida Department of Health in Marion County began contacting nearby residents and businesses to ask for permission to test their wells.
I’ve been there for over 30 years and drink the water every day,” she said.
“We all have issues, but I don’t know if anything is related to the water,” Lawson said.
He said DOH personnel try to contact residents in person, by leaving door hangers and through the mail.
Concerns over PFAS are nothing new.

In SC town, residents live under cloud of uncertainty during water controversy

DENMARK — The water is rotten in the city of Denmark.
Many have opted to stop drinking public water completely, looking to bottled water or a nearby spring instead.
When Moncrieft started, Wheeler said he thought not brushing with the water was “extreme.” “I used to tease her all the time,” he said, “then she was right, the whole time.” No confidence It’s unclear exactly what health effects HaloSan has when consumed in water over a long term.
“More often than not, it’s not a health issue,” Edwards said.
As Edwards has worked with Smith, Brown and other residents concerned about water quality, he eventually asked to test the drinking water wells directly, but the city denied his request.
In its responses to the two class-action suits, the city has broadly denied the claims that it is harming residents’ health and that it is overcharging residents for water.
One other option has been the water distributions organized by several groups, including Denmark Citizens for Safe Water.
Organizer Deanna Miller-Berry, who is also a plaintiff in one of the lawsuits, helped run a string of distributions Thursday.
“I don’t even have to call them, when they see it, and they hear about it, they’re coming,” she said.
Jones has lived in Denmark for three years, but she said she doesn’t want her daughter to get sick, and she’s frustrated that the city government continues to charge for a utility most people have lost faith in.

Florida Republicans didn’t sign letter on dirty water

U.S. Rep Debbie Wasserman Schultz and 12 other members of Florida’s delegation wrote to two top congressmen last week, requesting their committee to press the Environmental Protection Agency on what it is going to do to regulate chemical contamination in drinking water.
A spokesman for Wasserman Schultz said her office sought support for the letter from the entire 27-member delegation.
“We respectfully request that you inquire about EPA’s efforts to establish a drinking water standard for PFOS and PFOA and ask how EPA can improve its oversight and support of state drinking water programs,” she wrote.
“Because these are not yet regulated contaminants, a proper system for monitoring, regulating, and sending notifications for contamination events is not yet in place.” Webster said he didn’t sign because he believes the responsibility falls to Florida’s departments of environmental protection and health.
He made clear that the regulation of PFOS and PFOA, as well as the investigation into contamination, is their responsibility alone.
“We have had several discussions with local and state officials about the issue of water quality in and around the Ocala fire college,” said Yoho’s deputy chief of staff, Kat Cammack.
“We have also consulted with the Florida DEP on potential solutions moving forward.
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Drinking water not affected by toxins

MEMPHIS, Tenn. – Toxins have seeped into the ground near the University of Memphis, but the Environmental Protection Agency and Memphis Light Gas and Water both claim the drinking water has not been affected. Federal and Tennessee agencies are holding meetings to update the public on the superfund site. The former dry cleaner site has five testing wells driven into the soil to gauge the flow of the toxins in the soil and if it seeped into the ground water below. Trending stories: The EPA collected data beginning July…