Glen Cove is launching a program to remove old lead pipes that connect residents’ homes to the aqueduct. The city expects the program, which is funded by a government grant, to be implemented by the end of the year.
“If you have a plumbing – that your sewer pipe contains … lead – and it goes from your house to the street, it needs to be replaced. You need to remove the plumbing from it,” Mayor Timothy Tenke said at a council meeting on Jan. . December.
The state awarded the city a grant of $ 627,327 to pay for the cost of removing the lead pipes.
“They have these lead pipes that were laid underground because they don’t rust, they don’t corrode because they’re made of lead, but they are still leached into the ground and contaminated the groundwater,” Tenke said.
The state program, called the Lead Service Line Replacement Program, was incorporated into the 2017 Clean Water Infrastructure Act and is run by the New York Department of Health, which city officials said selected Glen Cove to receive the grant.
The city plans to review the city records and Geographical Information System mapping software to try to locate the pipes.
City officials said during the working session that the pipes are generally not present in houses built after 1950. The city plans to send residents flyers with their water bills, with instructions on how to rate their lead for lead, or have the city test them. Residents who have been found lead pipes can then have them removed and replaced free of charge as part of the city program.
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The city pays the upfront costs, which are then reimbursed by the state health department as part of the grant.
The city council approved the start of the grant program with the state at its May 12 session. The city-state contract includes $ 535,950 for construction and $ 62,700 for engineering and inspection, city spokeswoman Shannon Vulin said in an email. The program is fully government funded and does not include local play.
The city council planned to vote at its Tuesday session on hiring Walden Environmental Engineering PLLC of Oyster Bay for up to $ 62,660 to provide planning, construction and site inspection and monitoring services for the program.
THE DANGERS OF LEAD
Lead is a naturally occurring element that can be toxic and pose a risk to people, soil and drinking water:
- Utility pipes that connect homes to water pipes and that contain lead can corrode and cause lead to get into drinking water.
- Areas with high acid or low mineral water are particularly susceptible to corroded lead pipes and fittings.
- Lead exposure can also be caused by devices that use lead solder.
- Lead exposure in children can affect their growth, behavior and learning ability, and cause anemia, kidney damage and hearing loss.
- Adults may suffer from decreased brain and kidney function and increased blood pressure from lead exposure.
- Lead exposure increases the risk of miscarriage in pregnant women.
SOURCES: New York State Department of Health, Environmental Protection Agency
Ted Phillips covers the city of Oyster Bay and has been a Newsday reporter since 2011. During his career, he covered the Albany state government, local finance, local government, crime, economic development and armed conflict.