Town aims to replace residential lead-lined water service lines

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An employee runs water in the Blank Slate Media office. (Photo by Janelle Clausen)
An employee runs water in the Blank Slate Media office. (Photo by Janelle Clausen)

The Town of North Hempstead received a $611,363 grant from the state Department of Health to replace residential drinking water lead service lines, officials announced on Friday, as part of New York’s Clean Water Infrastructure Act of 2017.

While all water mains within the Town of North Hempstead have been replaced, the health department said, individual service lines with homes might still have lead. It’s more likely in homes built before 1939.

There is no safe level of lead exposure, according to the World Health Organization. Lead can impact neurological development in children, spark headaches and increase the risk of other health issues over time.

“Replacing these residential lead service lines ill help to protect the health of our residents and our families,” North Hempstead Town Supervisor Judi Bosworth said in a statement. “We are grateful that this critical funding has been made available.”

The funding comes from the Lead Service Line Replacement Program, which aims to help with the costs of residential water line replacements. The Town of North Hempstead Community Development Agency will implement it.

The CDA, along with the planning and building departments, will target areas with higher concentrations of pre-1939 homes and income eligible households. North Hempstead also plans to reach out via ads, social media and flyers. It’s unclear at this time how many homes fall under this designation.

Carole Trottere, a town spokeswoman, said “there’s no deadline” for reaching out.

Anyone interested in confirming whether they have a lead service line and having it replaced should call 311 or contact the CDA at (516) 869-2480 or via its website www.northhempsteadny.gov/cda-message.

Homeowners can also test if there’s lead in their water by contacting the New York State Department of Health by email at freewatertesting@health.ny.gov, phone at (518) 402-7650 or via their website.

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