CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The state House of Delegates Judiciary Committee took its first look Thursday night at a new version of a bill that responds to the Jan. 9 chemical leak on the Elk River and the water emergency that followed.
The detailed bill replaces the version the state Senate passed a few weeks ago. House Judiciary Committee chairman Tim Manchin (D-Marion) told delegates several hours would be spent working on the bill Friday and Sunday.
Robert Williams (D-Taylor), who explained the bill to fellow committee members Thursday, said the first part calls for the state Bureau of Public Health to work with water utilities to update their source-water protection plans.
“Where they have a good handle on all of the contaminants that could be potentially affecting their systems,” Williams said.
The protection plans deal with both surface and ground water.
The second section of the bill creates regulations for above-ground storage tanks, and Williams said the third section calls for additional protections in the zone of critical concern where water utilities are drawing their water.