No longer a pipe dream: State to get $150M to replace lead service lines

Over the past two years, New London has been aggressively inventorying its pipes, the first step in the replacement process. Lanzafame has pored over historical records, hired engineers to do predictive modeling, and arranged for exploratory “test pits” to be drilled throughout the city to determine how many of its public water lines are made of lead. Connecticut is slated to receive about $30 million in each of the next five years through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Act to find and replace lead pipes with those made of copper, said Lori Mathieu, public health chief of the Drinking Water Section of the state Department of Public Health. In Connecticut, 3,000 children under 6 years old—nearly 5% of children in that age group—were reported as lead poisoned in 2020, the latest year for which the state DPH provides numbers. More than a third of those children lived in Connecticut’s poorest cities: New Haven had 376 poisoned children, Bridgeport had 298, Waterbury, 252, and Hartford, 171.

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