MARTIN COUNTY, Fla. -- Speaking in Stuart Tuesday U.S. Rep. Brian Mast said he will introduce new legislation to address the algae issues on the Treasure Coast.
It's called the Stop Harmful Discharges Act.
Congressman Mast says he lives on the Treasure Coast and the discharges affect him personally and he wants to make sure the health and safety of his family and the community are taken seriously.
The legislation calls for the end of discharges from Lake Okeechobee and changes the way the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers manages the lake.
Mast says dike integrity is a priority for the Army Corps and he feels people on the Treasure Coast are being taken advantage of.
"The Treasure Coast and the west coast of Florida are given zero priority and I'm not saying that as hyperbole. We're given zero priority when it comes to the management of Lake Okeechobee. If you want to know things that take a higher priority, recreation takes a higher priority than the health and human safety of everybody here on the Treasure Coast," Mast said.
Mast is headed to Washington with his bill, and he hopes to have enough support to get the measure passed.
Lauren Baer, who is challenging Mast's congressional seat in November, criticized the congressman and said it took him 19 months to file this bill.
She went on to accuse Mast of letting the EPA roll back environmental protections for our area.