Del. officials celebrate bill that will provide clean water in Sussex County
ELLENDALE, Del. – “There are folks throughout Sussex County that do not have clean water. They can’t pour a glass of clean water out of their taps,” said regional consultant for the socially responsible agriculture project, Maria Payan.
On Friday, Delaware state officials, community activists, and residents across Sussex County celebrated the newest water infrastructure bill that was signed by president Trump, which allows congress to provide necessary funds to individual states across the country to help local communities like Ellendale get access to cleaner water.
“This is going to make it easier for smaller communities without a lot of resources to be able to access very low cost money to help put more projects on the ground and make sure that they have clean water coming from the public system instead of trying to use some form the wells that are a little bit more contaminated,” said president and CEO for the national wildlife federation Collin O’Mara.
Officials say the near $2 billion of funding will allow places like Ellendale to provide ongoing maintenance to their water systems to make sure they function for years to come.
“Having more resources for testing so folks will know whether the water their drinking is safe. The second is having more resources to be able to actually rebuild and connect folks to the public systems because in some of these cases the well water, the groundwater is contaminated,” said O’Mara.
For more than 30 years, Bishop Major Foster, a community activist and pastor of Ellendale’s Philadelphia Pentecostal Holiness Church has made it his mission to bring clean water to residents in the area. he says there was no better way to celebrate the newest piece of legislation than at the place where it all started. His church.
“He sent me here to help these people and I just appreciate God for doing that. That’s what makes me feel good that I was able to come here and help these people get good water,” said Foster.
“This is something that’s a basic human right. So this was such a big deal today,” said Payan.
Officials add that this new law will be a game changer for for the entire first state, but espescially in Sussex County.
“It just makes me overwhelmed to see what you can do when God’s in the picture,” said Foster.
Officials say there’s still more work to be done across Sussex County, but they say this new bill is taking the first step in the right direction for the state.