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Blunt: Updated Kansas City Sewer Overflow Control Program Will Make Water Bills More Affordable

January 08, 2021

WASHINGTON - Today, U.S. Senator Roy Blunt (Mo.) commended the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the City of Kansas City for reaching an agreement on modifications to the sewer overflow control program that will provide regulatory certainty and make water bills more affordable for residents. In 2018, Blunt urged the administration to support modifications to the Kansas City sewer overflow control program to help protect Kansas City residents from costly utility rate increases.

“Kansas City residents have seen their water bills skyrocket ever since the sewer overflow control program went into effect a decade ago,” said Blunt. “Under the previous agreement, the average water bill doubled from nearly $50 to over $100, which disproportionally harmed low-income residents. I’m glad that the changes announced today will bring relief to those who need it most without hampering Kansas City’s progress in completing the largest public works project in its history.”

Under the 2010 consent decree, Kansas City worked with EPA to develop a sewer overflow control program to meet regulatory requirements and reduce overflows from the sewer systems, which the city continually complied with—often at the cost of city residents through increased rates. Due to the sheer magnitude, complexity, and cost of the program, Johnson County, Kan., and the City of Liberty, Mo., left the Kansas City regional water and sewer system.

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