The Los Angeles Times editorial board is calling on Governor Jerry Brown to take action on the Exide lead poisoning concerns in East Los Angeles. The board criticizes Brown for addressing the Porter Ranch natural gas leak but not the Exide lead poisoning.

Brown has visited Porter Ranch, declared a state of emergency and ordered public health reviews over there. But the LA Times writes that in working-class Boyle Heights, Maywood, Huntington Park, Commerce and surrounding area, residents are still living in what could be toxic homes due to lead poisoning. The lead can cause disabilities in children and developmental problems for new born babies.

While Porter Ranch’s incident occurred in late 2015, authorities have known about the Exide contamination for nearly two years now. In the affluent Porter Ranch, families have been relocated while homes in Boyle Heights are still waiting to be tested and cleaned for lead poisoning. Children in the East Los Angeles neighborhoods are advised to stay out of the dirt and not to eat fruits and vegetables that hit the ground.

Politicians point to a lack of funding in the slow Exide response, the LA Times reports. Brown’s proposed budget adds $800,000 to the cause, enough money to test 17 homes. But Los Angeles County Supervisor Hilda Solís calls for an additional $70 million to test all 10,000 properties that may be affected and to begin cleaning those homes.

Exide contends that they are not responsible for the lead poisoning in the area.

The LA Times called on Brown to treat East LA with the same urgency he is showing to Porter Ranch.

Boyle Heights Beat

Boyle Heights Beat is a bilingual community newspaper produced by its youth "por y para la comunidad". The newspaper and its sister website serve an immigrant neighborhood in East Los Angeles of just under...

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