If the EPA “did their job” in Flint, why did their regional administrator just resign?

posted at 10:01 am on January 23, 2016 by Jazz Shaw

You may recall that reporters finally caught up with EPA chief Gina McCarthy in DC the other day and asked her about the situation in Flint, Michigan and the dismal (if not criminal) response of her agency. She informed everyone that, “we did our job.” That’s an interesting perspective, particularly in light of the fact that she just accepted the resignation of the Region 5 administrator who sat on reports of toxic water in Flint for months without telling anyone. (The Hill)

The regional Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) chief responsible for Michigan is resigning amid charges that she did not do enough to prevent the Flint, Mich., drinking water crisis.

Susan Hedman, regional administrator for the EPA’s Chicago-based region 5, submitted her resignation Thursday, effective Feb. 1, the EPA said.

“EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy has accepted given Susan’s strong interest in ensuring that EPA region 5’s focus remains solely on the restoration of Flint’s drinking water,” an EPA spokeswoman said late Thursday.

Hedman told the Detroit News last week that her office knew in April 2015 that Flint’s action to switch its water supply could cause increased pipe corrosion and spiked lead levels.

The first question which should come to everyone’s minds is, why was this woman allowed to just resign? Why wasn’t she fired? I understand that sounds like a silly question since nobody at the EPA has been held accountable for anything since McCarthy has been in charge, but surely this is different. It’s true that somebody made the decision to switch the city’s water supply from Detroit to the Flint River and the damage was accelerated by their failure to anticipate the water treatment required to prevent the pipes from rotting out. Those involved with that decision need to be held accountable. But the EPA knew (or strongly suspected) that the people of Flint were drinking what is essentially toxic waste for six months and they said nothing. They suppressed a report which could have gotten safety protocols in motion while they argued internally over petty bureaucratic concerns and allowed the citizens to continue ingesting lead for months on end.

What kind of a human being does that? How was there not a single person inside that EPA regional office who thought to pick up the phone, call a newspaper and tell them that tens of thousands of people might very well be on the path to lead poisoning? Any reporter could go down to Walmart and pick up a kit capable of testing the lead levels in drinking water for under twenty bucks. This is outrageous, and I say that as somebody who has to watch government malfeasance on a daily basis for a living. And yet nobody seems to even be suggesting that Gina McCarthy be held accountable for this.

The EPA is been a hotbed of incompetence, corruption, partisanship, waste and fraud for years now and not a single person is made to stand against the wheel. If people want to hold Governor Rick Snyder accountable for this fiasco, fine. It happened on his watch. But Gina McCarthy’s neck needs to be stretched out on the block right next to his.

GinaMcCarthy


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

Comment pages: 1 2 3

If it means an end to the stranglehold that big money and lobbyists have over our legislatures, …

CivilDiscourse on January 23, 2016 at 6:24 PM

Talk about hypocrisy. The left has the largest big money strangleholds and has had for years now. You don’t see it, because you don’t look for it and you spend your time listening to your fellow travelers.

Is there some hypocrisy from some on the right, of course, but the entire premise of the left is hypocrisy. The end justifies the means.

Unions are big money, they have put strangleholds on government that we will never recover from, then there are the myriad of very rich donors who are primarily able to hide in the shadows because of the corrupt media. The biggest of which is George Soros.

Funny how the left seems to forget all of the money poured into government that the Democrat party is absolutely beholding to.

Neitherleftorright on January 24, 2016 at 12:09 PM

Hedman told the Detroit News last week that her office knew in April 2015 that Flint’s action to switch its water supply could cause increased pipe corrosion and spiked lead levels.

Too bad Lois Lerner is not this honest.

fred5678 on January 24, 2016 at 12:47 PM

Talk about hypocrisy. The left has the largest big money strangleholds and has had for years now. You don’t see it, because you don’t look for it and you spend your time listening to your fellow travelers.

Is there some hypocrisy from some on the right, of course, but the entire premise of the left is hypocrisy. The end justifies the means.

Unions are big money, they have put strangleholds on government that we will never recover from, then there are the myriad of very rich donors who are primarily able to hide in the shadows because of the corrupt media. The biggest of which is George Soros.

Funny how the left seems to forget all of the money poured into government that the Democrat party is absolutely beholding to.

Neitherleftorright on January 24, 2016 at 12:09 PM

If you can point to where you think I might even imply that this wasn’t the case, you might have a point. I want big money and special interest out of elections and the legislature. How does this, in your mind, equate to me saying that the left isn’t problematic in this regard as well?

I’m pointing out the hypocrisy of the right especially, because THEY’RE the ones who pretend to HATE big gov, all the while contributing to the bloat. At least the left doesn’t pretend to hate the fed.

CivilDiscourse on January 24, 2016 at 2:24 PM

Hypocrisy gets very wordy and defensive at times it seems.

APACHEWHOKNOWS on January 24, 2016 at 2:27 PM

At least the left doesn’t pretend to hate the fed.

CivilDiscourse on January 24, 2016 at 2:24 PM

The right doesn’t hate government. The right hates government that’s overstepped it’s legitimate authority and has become the source of all our problems.

The left loves government because they use it to force their agenda and values on people who would never accept them with force or coercion used.

darwin on January 24, 2016 at 2:37 PM

least the left doesn’t pretend to hate the fed.

CivilDiscourse on January 24, 2016 at 2:24 PM

I love people like you. You think you’re so intelligent and complex when in reality, you’re a simple as they come.

CWforFreedom on January 24, 2016 at 3:06 PM

The “right” isn’t contributing to the bloat. Career politicians that get elected as republicans are contributing to the bloat by giving into threats from the left, but the “right” is no fighting these republicans.

Sorry, but you got nothin’.

blink on January 24, 2016 at 4:04 PM

This is false: IncivilDiscord has pedantry and SJWarriorism, massive amounts of it! :D

Anti-ControI on January 24, 2016 at 5:54 PM

The “right” isn’t contributing to the bloat. Career politicians that get elected as republicans are contributing to the bloat by giving into threats from the left, but the “right” is no fighting these republicans.

Sorry, but you got nothin’.

blink on January 24, 2016 at 4:04 PM

Tell me again how many TEA Party victories there have been once they were elected. Did they follow principles, or did they more or less fall in line? If you accept big money donations to get elected, then you’re bought and paid for. That gravy train can’t be stopped magically once you’re in office.

Your heroes aren’t who you think they are.

The right isn’t contributing to the bloat? That’s either a simplistically fanatical view or a stunningly naive one. Tell me more about pork, subsidies, mandates, and corporate/industry welfare. Again—you can’t allow big money to control who wins elections and then think it will magically dry up when they’re in office. That doesn’t make a lick of sense.

That’s why campaign donation caps are essential.

While some on the right are willing to acknowledge these points, others remain willfully blinkered.

CivilDiscourse on January 24, 2016 at 9:57 PM

The left loves government because they use it to force their agenda and values on people who would never accept them with force or coercion used.
darwin on January 24, 2016 at 2:37 PM

And I don’t think taxpayer dollars should be used to shore up industry with subsidies. But the right seems to think it’s okay to use gov to force their agenda in this way.

CivilDiscourse on January 24, 2016 at 10:11 PM

CD, atrocious. The simplicity continues. Now call me racist….please. You know you want to.

subsidies.
CivilDiscourse on January 24, 2016 at 10:11 PM

Planned parenthood.

You really are too easy.

CWforFreedom on January 25, 2016 at 7:10 AM

And I don’t think taxpayer dollars should be used to shore up industry with subsidies. But the right seems to think it’s okay to use gov to force their agenda in this way.

CivilDiscourse on January 24, 2016 at 10:11 PM

Examples?

What about the billions poured into industry by democrats?

darwin on January 25, 2016 at 7:38 AM

CWforFreedom
darwin

Yet again, your argument toward my point is nothing more than that the Democrats do it, too. That’s really not a valid counterpoint for wanting big money out of elections and lobbying legislators. I’ve already said I want it gone, period—from both sides. And you see that suggestion as a way to make a partisan point, pretending that I blame the right while ignoring the same problem on the left. Therein lies the problem.

Once you’re able to get beyond that and admit to the fact that the right enables big government, too, then you’ll have an honest point to make.

CivilDiscourse on January 25, 2016 at 2:28 PM

CivilDiscourse on January 25, 2016 at 2:28 PM

Sure the right enables big government. That’s why we’re where we’re at. The last attempt to slow down it’s growth was the Republican Congress that forced Bill Clinton to balance the budget and reform welfare. Government has never really stopped growing though, it just slowed it down. George Bush came in and increased it even more. Obama arrived and poured octane into the gas tank.

Again, money in politics is a symptom not the cause.

Taking money out of politics does nothing because payment for favor will be garnered some other way.

As I stated earlier power corrupts. You want to see lobbyists gone? You want money out of politics? You want to see an end to play for pay? Take their power away.

When Washington doesn’t control something, no one will pay for them to influence it.

This is pretty simple stuff. However, it’s also dangerous. Nothing is more dangerous than trying to take power away from corrupt politicians. The bigger the government, the more self protective it becomes.

Us little people exist simple to wring money out of and votes. That’s it.

darwin on January 25, 2016 at 3:41 PM

darwin on January 25, 2016 at 3:41 PM

Common ground. Imagine that. Awesome. :-)

I know that you and I would (and do) disagree on what gov. role should be, but I am no fan of the bloat that it has become. I happen to believe that gov has a role to play in many issues that face the nation, BUT I’d like to see more private sector and NGO partnership in addressing these problems, because, as you say, absolute power corrupts.

An example of partnerships in improvements that I would support include education and urban renewal. I believe the private sector should take point on these fronts. after all, it will be the private sector that will benefit from a better educated citizenry living and working responsibly in better gentrified areas. An example of the stupid waste that happens when the gov goes it alone was the ACA Website roll out disaster. Private-sector consultants would have no doubt gotten that under control. That they weren’t asked to play a part was just stupid.

I tend to be more moderate on this—I think private/public cooperation is the way to go. Either extreme is bad for the country. And interest groups/lobbyists/big money in elections only serve to reinforce power and serve their own ends rather than citizens’ needs. So yeah, shrink government overreach and replace it with private/NGO partnerships. Reduce/eliminate lobbying influence. But there’s no way you can do that without also capping campaign donations.

CivilDiscourse on January 25, 2016 at 5:25 PM

I know that you and I would (and do) disagree on what gov. role should be, but I am no fan of the bloat that it has become. I happen to believe that gov has a role to play in many issues that face the nation, BUT I’d like to see more private sector and NGO partnership in addressing these problems, because, as you say, absolute power corrupts.

CivilDiscourse on January 25, 2016 at 5:25 PM

You can’t have the government interceding in issues. Period. That’s how corruption starts.

Who built our first universities? Who built our first hospitals? Who built our charity hospitals? Religious organizations and private citizens.

If there’s a need, people almost always answer the call. Secondly, you will always have poor people, stupid people, lazy people, smart people, hard working people, criminals, honest people, dishonest people. The government cannot fix that. If never will. All one can do is live a good life and help those less fortunate when they can. People in this country are extremely generous. Many successful people are more so.

Leave the government out and let people take care of themselves. Government ALWAYS makes any problems it attacks worse. After nearly a hundred years of liberal programs they’re still whining about the same problems. Problems that can never be fixed because people just aren’t equal and can never be made equal.

Now, as much as I dislike government programs, you are in luck. If you simply follow the brilliant framework laid out by the founders … they severely limited the federal government. ALL other powers belong to the states and the people. Meaning if any state WANTED to provide what you want to it’s citizens then they, and they alone had the power to do so.

The states were meant to be laboratories for experiment, not slaves to a massive central government dictating their every move. In reality the US should have 50 completely different states … all doing what THEIR citizens want.

Can then state governments become corrupted? Of course, but state governments are more answerable to their citizens, just as local government is even more answerable. It is then up to the citizen of each state to ensure the honesty of their government. When they fail, boot them out.

Freedom, contrary to what many people believe is very hard work. Slack off and you lose it.

darwin on January 25, 2016 at 5:46 PM

darwin on January 25, 2016 at 5:46 PM

I do believe that partnership is the way forward. Local/state government rather than fed? Sure. But again, I point to education as an example—it’s a mess, and needs to be fixed. Pure privatization is not the answer, however, as private sector reformers have jumped the shark from improving education to lining investors’ pockets with public dollars. There needs to be a balanced cooperation. Otherwise, the only greater good that’s achieved is for the private business’s bottom line.

CivilDiscourse on January 25, 2016 at 6:57 PM

Comment pages: 1 2 3