7/10/20
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MEDIA CONTACT: Heidi Griesmer
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Ohio EPA Ends Public Water System Order

As part of the state’s Responsible RestartOhio efforts, Ohio EPA Director Laurie A. Stevenson ordered a termination of the Agency’s previous direction that prohibited public drinking water systems from shutting off customers’ water service due to nonpayment. 

The previous order was issued on March 31 in the interest of public health to ensure that as many Ohioans as possible had access to water as they followed the now-expired stay-at-home order to prevent the spread of COVID-19.     

“We strongly encourage all of Ohio’s water systems to work with their local partners to expand existing or develop new assistance programs as able,” said Ohio EPA Laurie A. Stevenson. “Ohio’s utilities have demonstrated tremendous leadership throughout this crisis, and many are now proactively implementing new and innovative programs to assist customers during these challenging times. We applaud those efforts and would like to see more utilities across the state offer flexibility in payment plans to keep as many Ohioans on public drinking water as possible.”

Residents with questions about how this order relates to their water service should contact their drinking water provider.

Ohio EPA will continue partnering with the Ohio American Water Works Association and utilities across the state to monitor the short- and long-term impacts of the Coronavirus, identify critical resource needs, and ensure continued supply and delivery of safe drinking water.  

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The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency was created in 1972 to consolidate efforts to protect and improve air quality, water quality and waste management in Ohio. Since then, air pollutants dropped by as much as 90 percent; large rivers meeting standards improved from 21 percent to 89 percent; and hundreds of polluting, open dumps were replaced with engineered landfills and an increased emphasis on waste reduction and recycling.

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