Director involved in water scandal picked for Missouri agency

4 months 2 weeks 3 hours ago February 09, 2017 Feb 9, 2017 Thursday, February 09 2017 Thursday, February 09, 2017 1:59:00 PM CST in News
By: The Associated Press

JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens' pick for health department director has been embroiled in controversy over well water safety in his home state.

Greitens announced Thursday he's tapped North Carolina's former public health director Dr. Randall Williams for the job in Missouri.

Veteran North Carolina toxicologist Ken Rudo has accused Williams of acting unethically by saying well water near Duke Energy's coal ash pits is safe.

State scientists in 2015 warned against drinking the water that contains a cancer-causing chemical. Williams last year reversed that decision, adopting Duke Energy's view that the warning was too cautious about chemical levels.

Greitens touted Williams for his work dealing with opioid abuse and the Zika virus. Greitens' spokesman says the governor was aware of allegations against Williams but still supports him.

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