A bill attempting to phase out cesspools takes a major step forward this week. The Rhode Island Senate approved the bill.
The bill would require homeowners selling their properties to replace their cesspools with any system that handles and treats human waste, like a septic system. That’s a hole in the ground that receives untreated human waste from a building. It can contaminate groundwater and local waterways.
Meg Kerr, Rhode Island director of Clean Water Action, said the bill has come before the General Assembly for a number of years now.
“The thing that has changed is that Rhode Island builders are strongly in support of seeing this bill passed this year,” said Kerr.
Kerr adds that the Rhode Island Association of Realtors, a vocal opponent of this bill in previous years, is neither opposing nor supporting the bill this year.
“They’ll be limited opposition, I think, to the bill [this year] and there’s some promise to see it get through,” said Kerr.
Now the bill heads to the House of Representatives, where Rep. Teresa Tanzi has introduced a companion bill.
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