Head of the EPA tours north St. Louis water plant, touts need for infrastructure spending

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ST. LOUIS – EPA Administrator Michael Regan visited St. Louis on Wednesday to tour the Chain of Rocks Water Purification Plant, where he was joined by elected officials who spoke out about the need for federal investments like those outlined in President Joe Biden’s American Jobs Plan.

St. Louis Mayor Tishaura Jones and Congresswoman Cori Bush joined Regan on the tour. The group held a news conference to speak about the needs for water infrastructure investment.

“We want to continue to ensure that these facilities provide good quality drinking water,” Regan said. “We want to also strengthen the infrastructure to mitigate climate impact, as well as upgrades to be prepared for cyber threats, and also put millions of people to work.”

Mayor Jones said improving the city’s infrastructure will help deliver “fresh drinking water to our children and communities of color, who have suffered from decades of disinvestment.”

During the tour, city leaders informed Regan parts of the facility still in operation are more than 100 years old and that St. Louis is facing hundreds of millions of dollars in much-needed upgrades for improvements to help keep the plant operational.

President Biden’s American Jobs Plan would give $2 trillion in investments in roads, bridges, and other infrastructure, and nearly $111 billion of that would go toward modernizing aging drinking water, storm water, and wastewater systems.

“It’s not often that we have someone from the cabinet come to talk with us and see what the needs are. We are working on legislation we have the connection with him. His team will help get this work done,” Rep. Bush said.

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