- Associated Press - Wednesday, March 5, 2014

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - As West Virginia delegates prepare to debate a bill about the Jan. 9 chemical spill, environmental groups say lawmakers aren’t doing enough to safeguard tanks and water systems.

Groups including the state’s Sierra Club and Citizen Action Group said Tuesday that the House Finance Committee stripped crucial protections. Floor discussion starts Wednesday.

The finance panel removed a requirement for a state medical monitoring program. Little is known about the long-term health effects for people exposed to the spilled chemical in water.

The committee deleted a provision that West Virginia American Water use technology for early detection of chemicals in the water.

The panel removed a more stringent set of permits for some aboveground storage tanks near water systems.

The spill spurred a water-use ban for 300,000 people for days.