Murt to Sponsor Wolf Severance Tax Legislation to Fund PFAS Removal
1/31/2019
HARRISBURG—Rep. Tom Murt (R-Montgomery/Philadelphia) this morning stood with Gov. Tom Wolf to announce he would sponsor legislation to enact the governor’s proposal to fund infrastructure improvements through a severance tax on natural gas.

“It is time that we faced our responsibilities honestly and tapped our vast natural gas resources in a way that will allow us to invest in Pennsylvania’s future success” Murt said. “‘Restore Pennsylvania’ will help us upgrade transportation infrastructure, fight blight, and address contamination issues like lead and PFAS in my district and throughout the Commonwealth.”

Issues to be addressed by the proposal include:

Water Contaminant and Lead Remediation

The $4.5 billion “Restore Pennsylvania” plan will help fund the cost of removing contaminants like Perfluoroalkyl and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) from drinking water.

“As we’ve seen in communities around the Willow Grove Naval Air Base, the cleanup costs associated with removing these chemicals can be significant, and few funding options available at the state level,” Murt said.

The plan would also address the much-needed effort to remediate lead paint from homes throughout the Commonwealth. Studies continue to find elevated lead levels in blood tests of Pennsylvania’s youngest residents, a result of Pennsylvania’s older housing stock, 70 percent of which was built before the 1978 ban on lead paint. Long-term exposure to lead paint can have devastating developmental consequences including lowered-IQ, memory problems, and other neurological and behavioral effects.

Expanded Internet Service

More than 520,000 of Pennsylvanians in rural areas are without quality Internet access, while another 250,000 live in urban areas. “That means businesses cannot adequately market themselves or conduct business online,” Murt said. “It also means many children miss out on learning opportunities.”

Restore Pennsylvania would provide grants for installation of infrastructure to bring high-speed internet to every corner of the Commonwealth. Funding will support every phase of the process from feasibility testing to connection.

Improving Flood Control

The plan would also fund flood prevention to protect against severe weather and save homes and businesses in flood prone areas across the state. “Restore Pennsylvania” will provide funding to help towns and cities prepare for flooding and severe weather, upgrade flood walls and levees, replace high-hazard dams, and conduct stream restoration and maintenance.

The plan would also establish a disaster relief trust fund to assist individuals who suffer losses that are not compensated by FEMA or other programs.

Improving Access to Natural Gas

“Restore Pennsylvania” will provide increased spending flexibility to ensure that more communities and businesses across the state have access to low-cost, clean-burning natural gas, and provide grants to help businesses install combined heat and power and micro-grid systems at existing or new facilities.

Murt will begin by gathering co-sponsors for this legislation before it is formally introduced.

Representative Thomas P. Murt
152nd District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Media Contact: David Foster
267.207.0207
dfoster@pahousegop.com
RepMurt.com / Facebook.com/RepMurt



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