BLADESDel.- Tonight, the Environmental Protection Agency hosted a public meeting at the Blades Fire Hall with the support of DNREC and other organizations. 

Back in January the Environmental Protection Agency asked DNREC to test and survey water in the town of Blades. In February the tests came back that chemical compounds had contaminated the drinking water in town. Over the next few weeks people were unable to drink or cook with the water. The national guard, and other organizations stepped in to help the town during this time.

The EPA hosted the public meeting to hear back from people that were affected.

Amanda Miles, from the EPA says it's important to attend for many reasons.

"To comment and give their opinion on the listing of the site and tonight we’re providing and opportunity to hear more about the site assessment what’s been done for the site so far learn more about the Superfund process and what those steps look like," she said.

The EPA says, the program would allow for additional funding for a more comprehensive investigation into Blades groundwater issues. But the EPA knows that can be confusing for some people.

"It’s about the proposal of the blades groundwater site to the national priorities list. And the national priorities list is a list of sites that are eligible for federal funding for long term cleanup," said Miles.

Although the EPA is taking the lead now, DNREC is still involved but mainly supporting her efforts of the EPA as they request the funding. But DNREC says the help and research they have provided are currently helping the community.

Timothy Ratsep from DNREC said, "however the carbon filtration systems that are in place are filtering out those contaminants and ensuring that the water is safe and meets all drinking water standards."

Other members of the EPA spoke at the meeting letting the public know what the next steps if the funding were to be approved.

Connor O’Loughlin, the site assessment manager said, "the EPA first has to do what is called a feasibility study to try to understand where the full extent of the plume may reside. So if it reside below facilities or if it reside in a greater area we will be able to identify that first."

After that the organization says they would have to do a remedial investigation to help them gather more data. All of this is still up for discussion and the EPA says even if the funds get approved nothing would be done until the spring.

The EPA wants people to know the public comment period is open until January 7th and once it closes they will review all the feedback.
From there the organization will continue to update the community and maintain an open dialogue.