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Northampton County Controller Asks EPA to Investigate Possible Asbestos Exposure

May 23, 2011 – When concerned county employees brought complaints about possible asbestos exposure in several county buildings, including the county courthouse, Northampton County Controller Barron pushed for air quality testing and annual workplace physicals. Barron claims that county officials neglected to respond to the complaints, and as a result, he has asked the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to investigate possible asbestos contamination in the buildings. A finding of asbestos above the legal limits would result in fines for the county.

Barron’s actions have been met with strong opposition. County Councilman Ron Angle has accused Baron of “grandstanding”. County Executive John Stoffa has stated that Northampton County has already previously addressed possible asbestos exposure and has taken preventative measures. Despite the fact that early detection is the most effective way to treat mesothelioma and other asbestos-related diseases, County Executive Stoffa has stated that employee physicals are not necessary.

The county is awaiting the EPA’s findings.

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