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Rep. Russo Announces $3.68 Million for Acid Mine Drainage Remediation in Southeast Ohio

August 31, 2023
C. Allison Russo News

COLUMBUS- State Rep. Allison Russo (D-Upper Arlington) today announced that the Controlling Board has approved $3.68 million in funds for a first of its kind acid mine drainage treatment plant in southeast Ohio, restoring seven miles of Sunday Creek and addressing the single largest acid mine drainage source in Ohio.

“There are generations of children growing up in Appalachia who might never know the pure beauty of a waterways full of fish and clear, running water. For far too long, Ohio has failed these children and failed to properly address the economic and environmental harm caused by reckless mining practices in southeast Ohio,” said Rep. Russo. “With the help of this federal funding authorized by the Biden administration, we can finally start to restore southeast Ohio to its full economic and environmental potential.”

In addition to the environmental remediation, this project will also benefit the local economy, creating jobs and generating revenue derived from the recovery, processing, and sale of the iron precipitate as a paint pigment. This plant will be the first large scale acid mine drainage treatment plant in Ohio and the first of its kind to recover and sell the iron waste product to offset operation and maintenance costs.

Additionally, the Controlling Board approved $6 million to develop, create, and implement a statewide public awareness campaign for the 988 Crisis and Suicide Lifeline in Ohio. The 988 hotline saw 12,000 contacts per month in its first year, which was funded exclusively with one-time federal dollars. Today’s approval includes both state GRF funds and a federal mental health block grant.

Other approved Controlling Board items include:

  • $500k Early Intervention Hearing Services for children at various hearing and speech centers
  • $135k to promote safe storage of medication, alcohol, and guns through the Store It Safe (SIS) quality improvement program.
  • $378k virtual reality training platform videos for the Ohio Police Officers Training Academy (OPOTA)
  • $1M for temporary nursing services at Ohio Veterans Homes.
  • $2.5M to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and air pollution via the federal Climate Pollution Reduction Grant Program.
  • $5.3M to support the Ohio Automated Rx Reporting System (OARRS), including state efforts to reduce unintentional overdose deaths.