RELEASE: In Big Win for Jersey, Gottheimer Legislation Passed By House to Defund Proposed I-80 Rockwall, Invest in Combating Lead in Water, Address Mental Health Crisis, Tackle Lyme Disease and Passport Backlog

Jul 30, 2021

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Last night, the U.S. House of Representatives passed key federal investment provisions introduced by Congressman Josh Gottheimer (NJ-5), including (1) to protect students from lead water in schools; (2) to address the pandemic-linked student mental health crisis; (3) to defund the proposed I-80 rockwall project, and, instead, utilize a safer, evidence-based, eco-friendly solution; (4) to combat Lyme disease; and, (5) to help clear the massive passport backlog.

Gottheimer’s provisions passed by the House this week will: 

  • Prioritize clean drinking water by adjusting federal CDC Environmental Health investment to help ensure that school drinking water is free of lead and dangerous chemicals.
  • Ensure pandemic-related mental health issues in students are addressed by making it clear that federal investment for the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) must help address the COVID-19-linked substance abuse and mental health issues among children and young adults.
  • Adjust federal investment for the Federal Highway Administration, to defund an expensive and unnecessary proposed artificial rockwall on I-80 in Warren County that will harm ecotourism in the region — and to, instead, utilize a safer, evidence-based, eco-friendly solution.
  • Help clear the massive passport backlog by directing investment to resolve processing delays for passport applications and renewals — ensuring that families in New Jersey and around the country can see their loved ones abroad.
  • Combat Lyme disease and tick-borne illnesses to keep our families healthy, by prioritizing innovation, research, and investment in the CDC and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

“From helping ensure that Fifth District students have clean water and the mental health resources they need, to protecting our local eco-tourism and community in Warren County, the legislation I fought for and passed is a major win for North Jersey,”said Congressman Josh Gottheimer (NJ-5). “I’m proud that the House came together to support my legislation this week — to put our children, families, and local North Jersey economies first.”

Watch Gottheimer’s remarks from the House Floor here.


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