DOVER, DEL. — U.S. Senator Tom Carper (D-Del.), Chairman of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works (EPW), today hosted Senator Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.), Ranking Member of the EPW Committee, for a field hearing in Dover to examine the unique challenges that small, disadvantaged, and rural communities face in accessing and maintaining drinking water services. Today’s hearing was the second in a two-part series, following a hearing yesterday in Beckley, West Virginia.
During the hearing, Chairman Carper and Ranking Member Capito heard testimony from Congresswoman Lisa Blunt Rochester (D-Del.) and questioned three other witnesses; Cassandra Codes-Johnson, Associate Deputy Director, Delaware Division of Public Health; Rick Duncan, Executive Director, Delaware Rural Water Association; and, Vikki Prettyman, DE/MD State Manager, Southeast Rural Community Assistance Project. They were also joined by Senator Chris Coons (D-Del.).
“You can’t have life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness if you don’t have clean water. Unfortunately, far too many Americans—from Ellendale, Delaware to Beckley, West Virginia and across our country—can’t trust the water that comes out of their taps.” Chairman Carper said. “I’m beyond pleased to have hosted Senator Capito in Dover today as we heard from local officials and leaders on the need to invest in drinking water. Our bipartisan infrastructure bill addresses everything from toxic forever chemicals to lead pipes. Once it passes and President Biden signs it into law, it’s going to mean cleaner water access for a lot of communities.”
“I greatly appreciate Chairman Carper’s invitation to visit the state he loves so much. Today’s hearing highlighted the similarities in rural areas’ water disparities. Whether in Delaware or West Virginia, communities rely on federal investments to address their water service needs,” Ranking Member Capito said. “This is all the more reason I look forward to our committee’s bipartisan Drinking Water and Wastewater Infrastructure Act becoming law.”