Stephens Secures State Funding to Remove All Detectable PFCs From Public Water in Horsham
7/14/2016
HARRISBURG — Rep. Todd Stephens (R-Montgomery) announced that the new state budget contains $10 million for the necessary infrastructure, such as carbon filters, to remove perfluorinated chemicals (PFCs) from the public water supply in Horsham. The United States Navy has agreed to pay for carbon filters on five of the 15 public wells contaminated by chemicals from the former Willow Grove Naval Air Station – Joint Reserve Base. These funds will allow Horsham officials to address contamination in the remaining wells.

After months of working together to address this critical issue, Stephens, with the support of Gov. Tom Wolf, was able to place $10 million in grant funding in a bill that passed as part of the state budget process. These filters will remove all detectable levels of the two contaminants- perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS)-- found in the public water system.

“This funding will provide the long-term solution necessary to ensure Horsham residents have safe drinking water,” Stephens said. “I want to thank the governor, Horsham Township Council and the Horsham Water and Sewer Authority for working with me to protect families in Horsham Township.”

“Since the EPA announced new public health standards for PFCs found in drinking water, Rep. Stephens and I have been working together to address the issues stemming from the PFOS/PFOA water contamination resulting from prior firefighting training activities at the former Willow Grove Naval Air Station in Horsham Township,” said Gov. Wolf. “I thank Rep. Stephens for his leadership on this issue on behalf of our shared constituents in Horsham Township.”

Horsham Council has adopted a short-term solution to eliminate all detectable levels of contaminants from the public water supply and requested Stephens seek state funding for a long-term solution to the water issues facing the township. Stephens and the council agreed that placing carbon filters on public water wells in the township was the best approach to protect families but funding the project remained a challenge.

“I want to thank Rep. Stephens and Gov. Wolf for working with us on this critical issue,” said Deb Tustin, Horsham Council president. “This funding will help us achieve our goal of removing all detectable levels of these contaminants from our water in Horsham Township.”

Earlier this year, upon learning the EPA no longer believed their previous standards were appropriate, Stephens called for carbon filters to be placed on public water wells serving Horsham Township. He has since been joined by Gov. Wolf, U.S. Sens. Bob Casey and Pat Toomey; and Congressmen Brendan Boyle, Patrick Meehan and Mike Fitzpatrick in calling for more action from the federal government.

Twice in two years the federal government informed the people of Horsham that their public well water exceeded acceptable levels of PFOA and PFOS contaminants. Both have been linked to several health issues, which forced Horsham Water and Sewer Authority to twice take public water wells offline to remain compliant with federal standards.

“We have no idea how long and to what extent we have been exposed to these chemicals,” Stephens said. “That’s why it’s critical we do all we can to remove all detectable levels of these contaminants from the water flowing into our homes and being consumed by families.”

The grant money will be provided to Horsham through the Pennsylvania Infrastructure Investment Authority (Pennvest), which is dedicated to funding systems for providing clean drinking water to the Commonwealth.

Representative Todd Stephens
151st District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Media Contact: David Foster
267.207.0207
dfoster@pahousegop.com
RepToddStephens.com/ Facebook.com/RepToddStephens

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