Frankfort, KY — State Rep. Chris Harris’ efforts to have Governor Bevin declare a state of emergency in Martin County because of its water crisis cleared a critical hurdle today after the Kentucky House of Representatives adopted his House Resolution 108.
“It means a lot to have my colleagues’ support on this issue, and my hope is that it will give Governor Bevin even more reason to declare an emergency, because I think this is the only reasonable step we can take to get the county’s citizens the clean water they deserve,” said Rep. Harris, who serves Martin County in the House. “It’s going to take state resources to help us get back on our feet, and the longer we wait, the tougher it’s going to be.”
Rep. Harris said he and local residents understand that this situation did not evolve overnight and that there are no short-term fixes. At the same time, “doing nothing is not an option. Extraordinary situations require extraordinary responses.”
In his resolution, Rep. Harris noted that much of the system’s infrastructure is at least 40 years old and loses 60 percent of its treated water through leaks, a rate four times above the maximum loss rate considered acceptable. The district is also asking for a nearly 50 percent rate increase, something he said many customers could not afford.
Rep. Harris said having the House approve his resolution was “an important step, but not the final one. I will continue looking for other ways to resolve this issue.”
Rep. Chris Harris