Waterborne pathogens can contaminate water and sand at beaches and threaten human health. Under the Beaches Environmental Assessment and Coastal Health (BEACH) Act, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) provides grants to states to develop water quality monitoring and public notification programs. This statement summarizes the key findings of GAO's May 2007 report, Great Lakes: EPA and States Have Made Progress in Implementing the BEACH Act, but Additional Actions Could Improve Public Health Protection. In this report GAO assessed (1) the extent to which EPA has implemented the Act's provisions, (2) concerns about EPA's BEACH Act grant allocation formula, and (3) described the experiences of the Great Lakes states in developing and implementing beach monitoring and notification programs using their grant funds.
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