News Briefs: EPA to Nix Policy That Suspends Environmental Laws During COVID-19

Also in this week's sewer and water news, a new homeowner is shocked to receive an outstanding water bill for $38,000

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has announced it will nix a recently created policy that allows companies to skirt pollution monitoring laws during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The agency announced the termination of the policy effective Aug. 31 in a memo, adding that the EPA may terminate the policy — in whole or in part — ahead of that date.

The memo comes on the heels of criticism and lawsuits from states and environmental organizations.

New Homeowner Shocked to Receive Outstanding $38,000 Water Bill

A resident of Thornhill, Ontario, recently received a water utility bill for nearly $38,000 after buying a new property.

According to CTV News Toronto, the resident says it’s the outstanding water bill from the previous owner of the property. The purchaser’s lawyer hadn’t checked to make sure utility bills had been paid off.

The property had sat vacant for a year and a half, and the new homeowner says a water pipe likely broke during that time. He says Alectra Utilities should have questioned such a high water bill, but the utility is demanding he pay the outstanding balance.

“It is the purchaser’s responsibility to ensure they understand any costs and arrears related to the property they are buying,” a utility spokesperson tells CTV News Toronto.

House Democrats Approve $1.5 Trillion Infrastructure Package

In other news, Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives recently OK’d plans for a broad $1.5 trillion infrastructure package that includes significant funding for water and wastewater infrastructure. The proposal was built off a highway bill introduced by Rep. Peter DeFazio.

Support for the bill was divided along party lines, and it’s unclear how the investments would be funded or what kind of support the bill will see in the Senate.


Comments on this site are submitted by users and are not endorsed by nor do they reflect the views or opinions of COLE Publishing, Inc. Comments are moderated before being posted.