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09/24/2020 09:01 PM
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/Legis/CSM/showMemoPublic.cfm?chamber=H&SPick=20190&cosponId=27926
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House of Representatives
Session of 2019 - 2020 Regular Session

MEMORANDUM

Posted: January 24, 2019 09:22 AM
From: Representative Karen Boback
To: All House members
Subject: Lead Contamination in Drinking Water in School Buildings
 
I plan to introduce legislation to address lead contamination in drinking water in Pennsylvania schools.

All of us are aware of the tragic situation that occurred in Flint Michigan regarding lead contamination in drinking water. This tragedy served as a wake-up call: a problem many Pennsylvanians thought had been solved for decades, lead in our drinking water, remains a threat.

Few places have been in the national spotlight on this issue as much as Pennsylvania, with our aging infrastructure making us particularly vulnerable. Lead in drinking water is being found in rural, urban and suburban school buildings across the Commonwealth. In fact, a 2012-2015 survey of federal data found that Pennsylvania had the highest number of schools with elevated levels of lead in their drinking water.

I am seeking to introduce legislation that would require public schools and non-public schools to test all outlets used for cooking and drinking annually for lead, and to ensure that said water is safe to consume.

The PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center came out with a report that gave our Commonwealth a grade of F, pertaining to the amount of lead in school drinking water. This report provides further urgency regarding this important undertaking.

Article 27 of the Pennsylvania constitution states, "The people have a right to clean air, pure water, and to the preservation of the natural, scenic, historic and esthetic values of the environment." I believe strongly that such legislation is necessary to ensure the health, safety and well-being of our children, and that it is the responsibility of the Commonwealth to provide for a safe environment in our schools.

This legislation will be similar to HB 2025 of the 2017-2018 Legislative Session which I introduced and was cosponsored by the following Representatives:

HARKINS, DRISCOLL, BRIGGS, MURT, RYAN, D. COSTA, KINSEY, MILLARD, V. BROWN, KAUFER, SCHWEYER, O'BRIEN, DEASY, DeLUCA, NEILSON, GILLEN, SIMS, DONATUCCI, ROZZI, SNYDER, BARBIN, STEPHENS, TOOHIL, RAVENSTAHL, THOMAS, WATSON, SCHLOSSBERG, WHEATLEY, READSHAW, BIZZARRO, CALTAGIRONE, CORBIN, MARKOSEK, DAVIS, ROEBUCK, LEWIS, WARREN, COOK, CHARLTON, DAY, DiGIROLAMO, HARPER, FARRY, HENNESSEY, HELM, BARRAR, MACKENZIE, M. QUINN, COMITTA, EVERETT, ROE, C. QUINN, MADDEN, A. DAVIS, HANNA, FRANKEL, BULLOCK, SCHLEGEL CULVER, KORTZ, DEAN, J. McNEILL, D. MILLER, DALEY, YOUNGBLOOD, WHITE, TOEPEL, HEFFLEY, MILNE, FREEMAN, RABB, KIM, MULLERY and PASHINSKI

As the Chairman of the House Children and Youth Committee, I am fully cognizant that the most important bodies of water are our children. I hope you will join me in sponsoring this important legislation.



Introduced as HB930