Lincoln County officials tell NBC Montana they are ready for the Environmental Protection Agency to hand over results from asbestos related studies. Studies, they say, should have been completed years ago. But many are skeptical that will ever happen.
"Trying to do right and make this study but I don't see how they can come up with a good risk assessment," said Libby resident Herman Erhard. "I think it's impossible."
"Spent an awful amount of money for what they accomplished," said Herman's brother, William.
In April, the Office of Inspector General chastised the EPA for not finishing the three studies on time.
"Seems like there has been a lot of emphasis on really watching the dollar when it comes to the end of the program rather than the beginning of the program," said Lincoln County Commissioner Ron Downey.
Officials said the toxicology assessment will determine whether or not remediation, or cleanup efforts have been successful. A feasibility study and risk assessment will follow.
"Looking to reduce public exposure, to reduce risk within the community, we're not sure exactly where to target until we have an actual toxicity value," said County Environmental Health Director Kathi Hoover.
We're told the studies are critical - they're needed to go forward with decisions dealing with the remaining asbestos cleanup and when the EPA finally pulls out of Libby for good.
"They owe the citizens of Lincoln County an advantage over what they had when they came. We want to make sure that we get the coverage to help us for the problems that come up after they leave," said Downey.
The EPA looks to release the findings of the studies by late 2014.