- The Flint water crisis is a failure at every level of government.
- Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Region 5 was aware of dangerously high levels of lead in Flint drinking water in April 2015, yet failed to act until January 2016 when they were forced to intervene.
- EPA Region 5 Regulations Manager Miguel Del Toral was discredited, silenced and retaliated against within Region 5 for strongly advocating for EPA to take action in Flint.
- In September 2015 EPA Region 5 discussed internally whether “Flint is the community we want to go out on a limb for.”
- EPA refuses to take responsibility or hold people accountable for the tragedy in Flint.
- For more than ten years, EPA has failed to meet important deadlines for finalizing regulationsassociated with the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA).
- EPA has prioritized finalizing ideologically driven rules like Waters of the United States and the Clean Power Plan over protecting drinking water.
- To examine the ongoing situation in Flint, Michigan.
- To review the EPA’s administration of SDWA in Flint, Michigan.
- On February 3, 2016, the Committee held its first hearing on the Flint crisis, titled: Examining Federal Administration of the Safe Drinking Water Act in Flint, Michigan.
- EPA Region 5 Administrator Susan Hedman announced her resignation effective February 1, 2016 and the EPA Office of Inspector General launched an investigation into the crisis.
- The Chairman recently visited Flint and toured the water plant and met with local residents.
- The Committee previously examined mismanagement at the EPA, particularly within Region 5, with hearings held April 30 and July 29 in 2015.
Witness Mr. Marc Edwards: “They [EPA] never apologized for what they did in Washington, D.C. and incredibly to this day, they have not apologized for what they did in Flint, Michigan. No apology from EPA. Completely unrepentant and unable to learn from their mistakes. I guess being a government agency means you never have to say you’re sorry.”
Representative Justin Amash (R-MI):“I think responsibility involves paying attention to unintended consequences, thinking about what might happen.”
Transportation and Public Assets Subcommittee Chairman John Mica (R-FL): “The reason we put EPA together was to protect people, right? In cities and communities and states where they did not act to protect the water of the people.”
Representative Buddy Carter (R-GA): “Instead of protecting the citizens, that’s what the EPA is about, the Environmental Protection Agency, protecting the public. Instead of saying, ‘we’ve got an expert here, one of my team members who is an expert in this field. is telling us we got lead in this water. Stop drinking the water. Stop drinking the water right now’. But you didn’t do that, you sought a legal opinion instead.”
Witnesses and testimonies
|Ms. Susan Hedman||Former Region 5 Administrator||U.S. Environmental Protection Agency||Document|
|Mr. Darnell Earley||Former Emergency Manager||City of Flint, MI||Document|
|Mr. Dayne Walling||Former Mayor||City of Flint, MI||Document|
|Mr. Marc Edwards||Charles P. Lundsford Professor of Environmental and Water Engineering||Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University||Document|
|Documents for the record||Document|
|Internal EPA Memo||Document|