U.S. to pay $2B to marines exposed to toxic drinking water in N. Carolina
Exposure occured while marines were assigned to Camp Lejeune in North Carolina.
WASHINGTON, DC, JANUARY 13, 2017 -- In a notice posted to the the Federal Register, the government's official journal, on Thursday, the Obama administration announced an agreement to provide more than $2 billion in disability benefits to veterans who were exposed to contaminated drinking water while assigned to Camp Lejeune in North Carolina.
NBC News reports that payments will begin in March through the Department of Veterans Affairs.
Veterans groups have said that Marine leaders were slow to respond when tests first found evidence of contaminated groundwater at the camp in the 1980s. The Marine Corps has said the contamination was unintentional, though outgoing VA Secretary Bob McDonald determined that there was "sufficient scientific and medical evidence" to establish a connection between exposure to the contaminated water and eight medical conditions for purposes of awarding disability compensation.
There are roughly 1,400 disability claims currently pending in relation to the contaminated water at Lejeune.
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