Finding solutions to Oscoda well water contamination

The governor recently signed my legislation to require the U.S. Air Force to cover the costs of fixing the water safety problem near the former Wurtsmith Air Force Base. 

I continue to work on solutions for affected residents. The federal government caused this problem and we are holding them accountable. The Air Force said that they would cover the cost of fixing it if the state required them to do so, and this new law will hold them to their word and ensure that they cover the cost of supplying safe water to homeowners whose well water they contaminated.

Last year, the Air Force and the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) sent letters to homeowners near the former base concerning well water tests that indicated perfluorinated compounds (PFCs) were present in their water. The PFCs in the well water were caused by firefighting foams used at the base when it was in operation. The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) followed up with a letter recommending impacted residents avoid drinking their well water or using it for cooking.

Public Act 545 of 2016 requires the U.S. Armed Forces responsible for an active or inactive military base to connect homeowners near a base to a safe, community water system if the DHHS has issued a drinking water advisory for the area and the U.S. Armed Forces acknowledges that the subject of the advisory migrated from a military base and is present in the groundwater.