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April 29, 9:30 am - 2pm, NC Environmental Justice Network Quarterly Meeting, Roseboro. Snow Hill Missionary Baptist Church, 531 Marion Amos Rd. For questions, email Naeema: naeema1951@gmail.com.

Drinking Water & Democracy at Stake: Call your NC lawmakers this week to weigh in

This week, lawmakers are beginning to discuss and pass dozens of bills that have been introduced this spring, in order to pass as many as possible before an important deadline on Thursday, April 27. Please call or e-mail your legislators today and weigh in on several key bills with huge implications for NC drinking water, environmental justice, and democracy!

To find the names and phone numbers of the legislators for your area, go to tinyurl.com/ncreps17 and scroll down to enter your county. Click on each legislator’s name to view their phone number and e-mail address.

Ask them to:

(1) OPPOSE House Bill 351 – don’t create incentives to privatize public water supplies. The bill would make it easier for for-profit water companies to buy communities’ water or sewer services, by driving up the price. They could charge the ratepayers to pay themselves back plus a profit! NC should put more funding toward maintaining public drinking water supplies and infrastructure, not facilitate purchase of these essential services by for-profit companies who are less accountable to the public.

(2) OPPOSE House Bill 467 – don’t limit the ability of communities near hog farms to seek compensation for health effects, nuisance odors, loss of income and other impacts. Don’t shield pork producers from being accountable to nearby residents–mostly poor, African-American communities in Eastern NC. (This bill has passed the House already, so please call your Senator).

(3) OPPOSE House Bill 576 – don’t allow spraying of landfill leachate without air permits! There has not been adequate scientific study of whether the aersolization of landfill leachate is safe, and the bill would waive air pollution permits for the process, so we are deeply concerned about this process being approved and used. In videos of the process, it does not appear as self-contained as the proponents have claimed!

(4) SUPPORT House Bill 825 to protect children in schools from lead exposure! The bill requires testing for lead in water supplies in child care facilities and elementary schools. If lead is found above a certain threshold, teachers and parents must be notified and access provided to a safe water supply.

(5) SUPPORT Senate Bill 554 and House Bill 714 – create a committee to study how to establish new voting districts in a non-partisan way to represent all of North Carolina. It’s time to end gerrymandering and come up with a fair system for redistricting.

Thanks for taking action! Check back often for updates and additional recommendations for taking action.

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