CAHOKIA HEIGHTS, Ill. – The Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (IEPA) is turning to the state’s attorney general to help in the effort to fix horrific sewer and drainage problems in the Metro East.
Director John Kim talked for the first time to You Paid For It investigator Elliott Davis about the water woes in the Metro East.
Areas like Centreville and Cahokia that are now part of the newly merged city of Cahokia Heights were among those suffering the most from the water troubles.
Kim said that his agency had turned over the necessary paperwork to the Illinois attorney general to take the matter to court for action to correct the problems that have plagued residents for decades.
He says he’s most interested in getting local officials to do more to fix the problem rather than force them to pay civil penalties. He’s also trying to help identify funding to help with the task.
Kim said that he understood residents’ frustration. He said there are a lot of issues like drainage ditches with too much overgrowth blocking them. And many of the lift station pumps are broken.
Kim says he has no idea how long it’s going to take to fix this huge problem that’s built up over decades. He doesn’t know how much it will ultimately cost.
He said IEPA tried its best to let local officials tackle the problem, but admitted that it’s time for his agency to step in more decisively to provide relief for weary residents.