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The Daily Northwestern
As part of a nationwide project to move away from lead piping, aldermen discussed ways to increase affordability for homeowners looking to replace their lead water service pipes.
After the 2014 Flint Water Crisis, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency issued the Lead and Copper Rule, which will prohibit partial lead service lines after 2024.
In coordination with the new regulation, the city is planning to replace all lead portions of the city’s water service line, even with a strained city budget. This year, the city plans to undergo eight separate water main improvement projects which will cost the city a projected $4.5 million. However, the city will only pay for the public portions of the water service lines. Portions on private properties need to be paid at the homeowner’s expense.
Currently, Evanston’s Lead Service Replacement Loan Program gives homeowners up to $4,800 in interest free loans to replace lead piping, but the city’s website says the average cost for replacement is about $7,000.
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The Janesville Water Utility receives a DNR grant to cover the cost of replacing all of the remaining private lead water service laterals in the City.
Janesville Utility Director David Botts says the cost to replace a private lead water service lateral is up to $6000 and the grant will be invaluable to homeowners.
Botts says the City is in the process of sending letters to the approximately 260 homes in the City that still have lead water service laterals.
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