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Maywood residents want action on new clean-water law

The ink is barely dry on Gov. Jerry Brown's signature on legislation making access to clean drinking water a human right to be pursued by the state, but residents of Maywood are already testing whether the measure was symbolic or real.

Several activist groups are joining the bill's author, Assemblyman Mike Eng (D-Monterey Park), at a press conference Tuesday calling for the state to act on the promise of the bill and address water quality problems in their community.

"For years, the people of Maywood have been denied this basic right, as their tap water is contaminated with various pollutants,'' said a statement Monday by the groups, including Environmental Justice Coalition for Water. "Maywood residents call on state and local agencies and officials to implement and enforce the new law without delay so that Maywood and other communities without safe water can finally enjoy this most basic human right.''

The bill does not become law until Jan. 1, but the groups are putting state officials on notice that they will be held accountable for the promise of AB 685. Eng said after the bill was approved by the Legislature that California needs to do more to make sure people have clean water.

“In far too many communities, the sole water supply is contaminated and families unable to afford treatment are left entirely without safe water,” Eng said.

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--Patrick McGreevy in Sacramento

 
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