B.E.A.C.H. Bill Passes

New legislation provides consistent national standards for beach-water- quality monitoring.

The Beaches Environmental Awareness and Coastal Health Act of 2000 (BEACH bill) has been officially passed by the 106th Congress as of Sept. 26, 2000. With the U.S. House of Representatives agreeing on Tuesday Sept 26th to the amended version of the BEACH bill passed by the Senate on Thursday Sept. 21, the legislation is final and is now being sent to President Clinton to be signed into law.

Finally, after 10 years of trying and two years of working closely with the 106th Congress, Surfrider Foundation and all the non-profit enviro supporters have achieved a great and historic victory for the coasts, an estimated 2 million surfers, and beach-users everywhere. We all extend our thanks to Rep. Brian Bilbray (R-CA) and Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ) who led the BEACH bill on its bipartisan charge through Congress.

Thanks to this legislation, we will now have consistent national standards for beach water quality monitoring, testing and notification. The bill requires all states with coastal recreation waters to adopt (within 3 years) beach water quality criteria that protect public health and welfare, consistent with Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) criteria guidance for pathogens and pathogen indicators.

Enjoy–next stop for BEACH bill is President Clinton’s desk!