Environmental Resources and Energy Committee Approves Resolution Creating Task Force to Investigate Threat of Lead Exposure in Pennsylvania

Harrisburg, April 25, 2017— Senator John T. Yudichak (D-Luzerne/Carbon) announced that Senate Resolution 33 (SR 33)—which would create a bipartisan task force to investigate the scope of Pennsylvania’s lead exposure problem—was approved unanimously today by the Senate Environmental Resources and Energy Committee. SR 33 now goes to a vote of the full Senate.

The resolution calls for the Senate to establish a task force on lead exposure comprised of the chairs of the Environmental Resources and Energy Committee and the Health and Human Services Committee and two members appointed by the Senate President pro tempore and the Minority Leader.

It also calls for the Joint State Government Commission to convene an advisory committee, which will include the Secretaries of Health, Environmental Protection, and Labor and Industry as well as the chair of the Public Utility Commission. The Physician General and two medical professionals with expertise in pediatric care and lead poisoning will also be appointed to the advisory committee. Representatives of municipal water authorities, rural water companies, water utilities incorporated in Pennsylvania, urban and rural school districts, a local health official, and the executive director of the Housing Alliance of Pennsylvania will assist with a comprehensive review of Pennsylvania law and public policy on lead abatement and exposure.

Within 18-months, the Joint State Government Commission must submit a report to the Senate detailing recommendations to amend existing laws or regulations or enact new legislation that will reduce the risk of lead contamination in Pennsylvania. The report must assess the age of housing and infrastructure, lead exposure threats, and identify the prevalence of lead in structures where children spend significant time.

“The Senate Lead Task Force will marshal the resources of medical professionals, industry leaders, and cabinet officials to provide the Senate with expert recommendations so that we can act quickly and efficiently to reduce the risk of lead exposure in Pennsylvania,” said Senator Yudichak. “It is inexcusable for any Pennsylvanian to fear that their health or their family’s health could be jeopardized because of ineffective lead polices or sufficient lead abatement programs.”

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