As President Joe Biden enacted the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act on Monday, Representative Bobby Rush urged federal officials to review aging water supply and distribution systems following a protracted pressure crisis in the suburb of Dixmoor, saying that such a study will be necessary to properly allocate federal funds devoted to improving this infrastructure.
According to a press release from Rush’s office, the state of Illinois is expected to receive $ 1.7 billion to upgrade water infrastructure through federal legislation, and he says situations like Dixmoor’s require the federal government to intervene and provide assistance.
Rush sent a letter to the Environmental Protection Agency on Monday, calling on the regulator to conduct a study of water supply and distribution systems for several southern Chicago suburbs, including Dixmoor.
âFor too long, these communities have struggled to ensure an affordable and reliable supply of drinking water to their residents,â said Rush. âMy constituents in the southern suburbs of Chicago need and deserve a supply of clean fresh water, but this cannot be guaranteed as we do not know the state of the water supply and distribution systems throughout the region. “
Rush’s letter mentioned several instances where the water supply was threatened and impacted, including toxic chemical contamination in the suburb of Crestwood in 2009 and in the village of Sauk in the years that followed.
President Joe Biden on Monday signed his hard-fought $ 1 trillion infrastructure deal in front of a bipartisan and party crowd on the White House lawn. NBC’s Mary Ann Ahern Reports 5.
Earlier this year, the village of Dixmoor began to experience severe water pressure issues after a main pipe rupture. After several weeks of problems and setbacks, the community was finally able to reverse a boil water order, but the challenges underscored the scale of the problem faced by those responsible for updating and maintaining the infrastructure. In the region.
“It is simply an unacceptable and shameful situation,” Rush said. âThe financial difficulties many of these southern suburban municipalities find themselves in due to structural disadvantages and the COVID-19 pandemic means that they simply are not able to address their water problems on their own. “
In total, the infrastructure bill provides $ 55 billion in funding to upgrade water infrastructure across the United States, according to Rush’s office.