For Immediate Release - May 15, 2023
Bruce King, Sustainable Infrastructure Supervisor
Department of Environmental Conservation
Vermont Inventory of Public Drinking Water Systems for Lead Service Lines
Montpelier, VT – Due to new federal regulations, Vermont public water systems need to inventory the drinking water service lines that connect homes and buildings to the water main by October 16, 2024. The inventory of this vital infrastructure will help systems find and remove harmful lead service lines that deliver water to Vermonters.
As the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) recognizes Infrastructure Week, May 15 – 19, 2023, members of the public can support this important public health work by responding promptly if a water system professional contacts them to schedule a quick water line check.
“We know that there is no safe level of lead exposure. Lead can enter our drinking water through outdated, corroding plumbing materials that contain lead, which can cause serious health issues,” said Bryan Redmond, Director of the DEC Drinking Water and Groundwater Protection Division. “The service line inventory is key to plan for removing any lead lines.”
Users that receive their water from towns or municipalities, homeowner associations, manufactured housing communities, schools, daycares, office buildings, factories, or other public water systems may be contacted by a water system professional to schedule a quick water line check. The service line inventory does not apply to users of private wells or transient non-community water systems (such as restaurants, hotels, and fitness centers with their own water source).
Water system professionals will only check the drinking water service line – not any other part of the home or building. The water system will notify Vermonters if their service line needs to be replaced and can work with them to replace the line.
“Vermont’s public water systems work to deliver clean, safe drinking water to homes, schools, and businesses,” said DEC Sustainable Infrastructure Supervisor, Bruce King. “To help systems continue this important work, DEC is using $140 million of Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funding over the next five years to support public water systems with service line inventories, replacement plans, and replacement projects.”
While large public water systems may qualify for low-interest loans, DEC is also funding contractors for water systems serving 1,000 or fewer people and offering staff support for schools and day care facilities.
“Functional, safe water infrastructure is the backbone of our lives and livelihoods,” said Agency of Natural Resources Secretary Julie Moore. “The work to identify and remove lead, is one more step in the right direction to ensure safe drinking water for Vermonters.”
Learn more about the federal Lead and Copper Rule Revisions or find Service Line Inventory resources and templates. For health information about lead hazards, visit the Vermont Department of Health. If Bruce King is not available, contact Megan Young at 802-585-4903 or Megan.Young@vermont.gov.
The Department of Environmental Conservation is responsible for protecting Vermont's natural resources and safeguarding human health for the benefit of this and future generations. Visit dec.vermont.gov and follow the Department of Environmental Conservation on Facebook and Instagram.