NC House backs Camp Lejeune, Asheville plaintiffs

The Associated Press

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RALEIGH — Legislation has moved quickly through the North Carolina House seeking to clarify a judicial rule cited by the U.S. Supreme Court this week in blocking people in Asheville from suing for damages over contaminated water.

The chamber voted unanimously Friday to change what's called the "statute of repose," which bars lawsuits brought more than 10 years after any alleged contamination occurred. The proposal tries to make clear that the 10-year period should not be interpreted as barring personal-injury cases involving certain groundwater contamination.

House members are hopeful the clarification will make it possible for litigation by Asheville homeowners near an electroplating business to move forward, as well as a lawsuit blaming contaminated tap water at Camp Lejeune for illnesses.

The measure goes to the Senate early next week.

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