Flint, MI–Given a recent funding extension from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Flint residents can continue to request free replacements of their lead water service lines.
The city originally agreed to have the water service line replacement project completed by the end of 2019 per a settlement agreement between Concerned Pastors for Local Action, the American Civil Liberties Union and the National Resources Defense Council against Michigan and the City of Flint.
However, the deadline was gradually pushed further and further back to Dec. 31, 2022, when the EPA’s Water Infrastructure Improvements for the Nation (WIIN) funding—the source of the replacement project’s financing—is set to expire.
According to an Oct. 28 City of Flint press release, the EPA has now granted a $100 million, one-year funding extension to Flint in order for the city to complete work on the remaining five percent of residential addresses that still require excavation and replacement of their water service lines.
The city also reported that it is in the “final phase” of its water service line replacement, with water lines outside of approximately 1,000 residences still needing to be excavated and “an indeterminate number” still requiring restoration.
Qualifying residents can request the replacement of their lead water service lines by submitting forms on the City of Flint website.
To qualify for replacement, residents must have a lead water service line and an active water meter account with the City of Flint, but they do not need to be up to date on their payments.
“More than 95% of lead pipes in Flint have been replaced, and we will continue the work until the job is done,” Mayor Sheldon Neeley said. “I will work with anyone who is committed to making that happen. I ask those remaining homeowners to give our crews right of entry so that we can fix this once and for all.”
According to the release, the city has already completed 27,000 excavations. The replacement project’s activities began in 2016 and contracts now stipulate that the remaining work must be completed by the end of 2023.