Lead Service Line Inventory Requirements and $15 Billion in Available Funding

Historically, prior to the early 1980s, lead and copper were common materials used in plumbing supplies.  However, exposure to lead and copper can yield health problems. Children are most vulnerable to lead exposure and may suffer from behavioral and learning problems, lower IQ, slowed growth, hearing problems, anemia, seizures, coma, and death. Pregnant women can pass lead to the fetus causing reduced growth and premature birth. There are harmful effects on adults as well, including cardiovascular problems, blood pressure irregularities, decreased kidney function, and reproductive problems. Public water systems have a desire, and an obligation, to provide a safe and clean product to their customers.

Realizing these health risks, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published the Lead and Copper Rule (LCR) in 1991 to minimize lead and copper in drinking water. 

The regulation has been revised several times, with the most recent revision, in 2021. This revision requires public water systems to further address concerns and develop a Lead Service Line (LSL) Inventory which serves to identify known information about customer service lines and creates a path to remedy.  The LSL is to be submitted by October 16, 2024. Other changes call for tap sampling, increased communication with customers and schools, and increased requirements for lead service line replacements.

Fortunately, there is funding available to aid communities in addressing this recent update to the LCR! 

The Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 has allocated $15 billion to the drinking water State Revolving Fund (SRF) for Lead Service Line Replacement work. However, to access these funds, the LSL must first be completed and the appropriate corresponding applications for funding made.

Commonwealth Engineers, Inc. has a long history of addressing water and wastewater infrastructure concerns. Our experienced team can assist your community to complete the required LSL Inventory and secure grant funds necessary to finance your efforts to “get the lead out.” 

For more information, contact our Business Development Team.