Fresno Bee Newsroom Blog

State health changes drinking water division chief

The state has made a change in the leadership of  the folks who control funding for drinking water fixes — an important pot of money for many San Joaquin Valley towns.

Beyond confirming the change, there is no explanation from the California Department of Public Health, though many here would be curious about it.

Over the last decade, this obscure division of Public Health has been considered a roadblock in many rural towns trying to clean up their drinking water. Technicalities have slowed funding for years, especially in Tulare County.

If the leadership change is related to the delays and outcry from those towns, people here would like to know it. If it is a routine personnel matter — such as a promotion, transfer or leave of absence — people would like to hear that too.

A public health information officer simply confirmed Leah Walker is no longer chief of the division, and Dave Mazzera is acting chief.

In the last year or so, I have seen stories quoting Mazzera on the chromium 6 problems in Southern California.

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