Mayor Neeley asks residents for help to test water quality

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Flint, MI — The City of Flint is combining forces with the United Way, Habitat for Humanity and the state of Michigan to meet its deadline to conduct water quality tests at homes most at risk for having lead service lines.

The testing is required for the city to remain in compliance with the federal Lead and Copper Rule and state Safe Drinking Water Act. The City of Flint is putting a massive effort behind collecting water samples in order to meet a Dec. 31, 2019, deadline.

“We need to raise awareness of the importance of our city’s ongoing water testing. The testing is important and we need residents’ help,” Mayor Sheldon Neeley said. “We must continue to monitor the safety of our water. If you or someone in your home is asked to submit a water sample, please do.”

Testing must be done at single-family homes that meet very specific criteria. The state of Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy has helped to identify more than 100 homes in Flint that could fulfill the requirement.

So far the city has collected approximately 20 valid samples, but it needs a minimum of 60. Called Tier I water sampling, all communities in Michigan are required to participate, but because of ongoing line replacement work the effort is more challenging in Flint than most communities.

The City of Flint missed its last reporting deadline in July, fulfilling that requirement for testing in September. That missed deadline put city crews behind headed into the current reporting period.

Residents are asked to especially be on the lookout for Community Outreach and Resident Education (CORE) teams operated through the United Way in partnership with Habitat for Humanity. These crews are doing outreach to recruit households eligible to participate in this testing.

The CORE teams will be driving Habitat for Humanity trucks and have identification badges.

Crews return to the home to pick up the completed water samples.

Mayor Neeley also reminds residents that service line replacement crews continue to work throughout the city. At least 1,000 households have not been able to be reached – that tally is still growing and expected to be far higher.

“This is for the safety of our city and generations to come. I urge all homeowners to allow our work crews and contractors access to check your service lines and replace any lead pipes,” Neeley said.

To opt-in to the service line replacement project or to check the status of your service lines, call 810-410-1133, email fasststart@cityofflint.com, or go online at bit.ly/Opt-In-Online.

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