Stabenow, Rubio, Peters Announce Bipartisan PFAS Accountability ActThursday, May 09, 2019
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senators Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Marco Rubio (R-FL), and Gary Peters (D-MI) today led eight other Senators in announcing the introduction of the PFAS Accountability Act. This legislation would hold federal agencies accountable for addressing contamination for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) at military bases across the country. It comes just days after the release of a new report showing that Michigan has the most PFAS-contaminated sites in the nation.
“The last thing that Michigan families who were exposed to PFAS-contaminated water and soil need is finger pointing from our federal agencies,” said Senator Stabenow. “Our legislation will bring quicker relief for families by holding the Department of Defense and all federal agencies more accountable.”
“I am proud to join my colleagues in reintroducing the bipartisan PFAS Accountability Act to ensure federal agencies have the ability to constructively engage with states to protect our drinking water, soils, and wetlands,” said Senator Rubio. “As we learn new information about PFAS chemicals, it’s critical that federal agencies who may have inadvertently contributed to contamination issues partner with our local communities to limit potential exposure to PFAS compounds.”
“Too many Michiganders have had their lives harmed by exposure to PFAS,” said Senator Peters. “This bipartisan legislation would help hold federal agencies, including the Department of Defense, more accountable for addressing contamination at federal facilities including military bases.”
The PFAS Accountability Act sets clear deadlines and reporting requirements for cleaning up PFAS contamination at federal facilities across the country, including active and decommissioned military bases, and mandates greater transparency. It calls on federal facilities, including military and National Guard installations, to expedite cooperative agreements with states to address PFAS contamination. These agreements commit the federal government to take specific actions and enable states and local communities to be reimbursed for costs incurred to address PFAS contamination.
If a cooperative agreement is not reached within a year after a state requests one, the bill requires a federal agency such as the Department of Defense to send a report to Congress explaining the reason for the delay and a projected timeline for completing the agreement. In addition, the bill enables the federal government to issue grants to states, local communities, and tribes to take actions to address drinking, ground and surface waters contaminated by PFAS.
U.S. Senators Tom Carper (D-DE), Thom Tillis (R-NC), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Richard Burr (R-NC), Maggie Hassan (D-NH), Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Maria Cantwell (D-WA), and Joe Manchin (D-WV) cosponsored the PFAS Accountability Act.
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