McDuffie Takes Legislative Action to Improve Air Quality

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For Immediate Release:
June 26, 2013

Today, Councilmember Kenyan R. McDuffie (D – Ward 5) – along with Councilmembers Mary Cheh (D – Ward 3), Tommy Wells (D – Ward 6), and David Grosso (D – At Large) –   introduced legislation to strengthen air pollution enforcement and engage residents in the air quality complaint process.

“Ward 5 contains a high percentage of the city’s industrial land,” said McDuffie. “As a result, our residents experience many of the unwanted effects of industrial businesses, including overwhelming odors from auto body paint shops and trash transfer stations.”

The “Air Quality Amendment Act of 2013” requires the District Department of the Environment (DDOE) to develop a written plan for investigating, analyzing and responding to air quality complaints. Additionally, the bill improves communication between DDOE, residents who make complaints, and affected Advisory Neighborhood Commissioners through required complaint status updates.

The bill raises the maximum penalties for air quality violations from $5,000 to $10,000 and further develops criteria for determining whether emissions interfere with residents’ quality of life.

“I know that these businesses want to be good neighbors, and this legislation will encourage DDOE to work more collaboratively with residents and business owners to reduce air pollution,” stated McDuffie.

The “Air Quality Amendment Act of 2013” was referred to the Committee on Transportation and the Environment.

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