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Pollution e-complaint form initiated
and toll-free line expanded    
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Will speed investigations of environmental concerns

Continues efforts to streamline government

[MARCH 20, 2004]  SPRINGFIELD -- Citizens will now be able to report pollution and other environmental concerns electronically, speeding up investigations by the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency.

"We launched an Online Electronic Citizens Pollution Complaint Form, available on our Web page (www.epa.state.il.us), that will result in getting information more quickly to our field offices around the state for follow-up investigation," announced Illinois EPA Director Renee Cipriano.

The e-complaint form will be acknowledged and forwarded to the appropriate regional office the same business day it is received online.

Examples of complaints include open burning, dust and particles and industrial emissions, open dumping, hazardous waste, stream and lake pollution, illegal discharges into waterways, issues affecting drinking water, and agricultural problems.

While many of these complaints are now and likely will continue to be made directly by citizens to their nearest IEPA regional field office, the new e-complaint system will provide a fast and efficient way to assist citizens and help address environmental problems before they become worse. The identity of complainants will be kept confidential unless they request otherwise.

 

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Director Cipriano also noted that in tandem with the e-complaints, environmental questions and complaints may also be made by phone through the expanded toll-free Environmental Helpline, 1 (888) 372-1996.

Examples of topics citizens may seek information about from agency staff through the toll-free number include potential pollutants in the home, such as asbestos, mercury, lead and hazardous waste; questions about local air quality and odors; trash burning; heating oil tanks; electronics recycling; quality of lakes and streams; and potential environmental problems when purchasing property.

"These initiatives, along with recently making more information available on our website on enforcement and status of cleanups, are part of fulfilling Governor Rod Blagojevich's commitment to renew and streamline state government to be more responsive to citizens," said Director Cipriano. "The Internet and technology improves communication and dialogue with the public."

[Illinois Environmental Protection Agency
news release]

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