“Federal agencies are unable to say when funding will become available for a national health study on communities exposed to perfluorinated compounds, some two months after a federal spending bill allotted $10 million for the effort. Without the funding in hand, the agencies were unable to say when such a study will begin.

The uncertainty adds a hiccup to what was touted as huge funding win for communities exposed to the chemicals nationwide, including several locally.

In late March, Congress passed and President Donald Trump signed into a law a contentious and long-sought “omnibus” spending bill, funding the government to the tune of $1.3 trillion. Nearly $100 million of that amount went to issues involving the chemicals, also called PFAS, including the money for the health study.

The chemicals were used for decades for a variety of purposes, including in firefighting foams widely used by the military. That application has led to water contamination at dozens of military sites across the country, including in Bucks and Montgomery counties, where the chemicals were found at nationally high levels in the drinking water of approximately 70,000 people in 2014…

‘(CDC) is working with the Department of Defense to transfer the funding for the multi-site health study and can begin working when funding arrives,’ wrote Take Allende, a CDC spokesperson, in an email. ‘At this time, we do not have a specific date.’

This news organization also inquired with the Department of Defense about when the money might be disbursed. In a phone call last Friday, DOD spokesman Christopher Sherwood also could not provide a timeline or estimate for when the funds might be released.

‘It’s going to take a little time,’ Sherwood said…

In a budget authorization bill passed last December, Congress did include a requirement that biomonitoring begin with 180 days, which would set an early June deadline. Asked whether that provision meant the CDC must begin blood testing by early June, Casey’s office suggested it was not an entrenched requirement.”

Read the full article by Kyle Bagenstose