New Jersey Named One of EPA’s Four Lead Service Line Replacement Accelerators

New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) Commissioner Shawn LaTourette and Director of Newark Water and Sewer Utilities Kareem Adeem joined other stakeholders on a panel moderated by Radhika Fox, Assistant Administrator, Office of Water—US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Comments from Vice President Kamala Harris can be viewed here.

JWW Members Attend the “Get the Lead Out Partnership” Event at the White House
The White House invited the Jersey Water Works (JWW) Lead In Drinking Water Taskforce and Lead Service Line Implementation Workgroup members Kareem Adeem (City of Newark) and Deandrah Cameron (New Jersey Future) for a kickoff event last Friday, January 27. NJ representatives included NJDEP Commissioner Shawn LaTourette, and were joined by experts from Connecticut, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin for the launch of the Biden-Harris “Get the Lead Out Partnership.” The Lead Service Line Replacement Accelerators will work collectively in 40 communities across the four states to share best practices and recommendations. This is in recognition of our hard work together as a collaborative and as the state of NJ to address lead issues head on, we look forward to great things to come from this partnership both within NJ and nationwide.
Lead Pipe and Paint Action Plan
The Lead Pipe and Paint Action Plan outlines 15 new actions to protect families by ensuring America’s drinking water and homes are safe and healthy. Actions include collaborating with local, state, and federal partners to accelerate the replacement of lead pipes over the next decade; EPA allocating $3 billion in Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funding to states, tribes, and territories for lead service line replacement in 2022; and calling on states to prioritize underserved communities. Read more here: The Biden-⁠Harris Lead Pipe and Paint Action Plan.

Deandrah Cameron and Kareem Adeem, members of the JWW Lead in Drinking Water Task force joined NJDEP Commissioner LaTourette and Mayor Grilo of East Newark in attending the White House meeting on Friday, January 27.
History of Our Lead in Drinking Water Conversation
On December 20, 2018, the Lead in Drinking Water Task Force, under the Jersey Water Works umbrella and with support from The Fund for New Jersey, convened its first meeting to address the risks from lead in water. The 30-member task force consisted of representatives from local, state, and federal governments, water utilities, academia, environmental and public health organizations, and smart growth and community advocacy groups.
  • Lead in Drinking Water: A Permanent Solution for New Jersey: In 2019, the JWW Lead in Drinking Water Task Force released policy recommendations for lead-free drinking water, which served as the basis for landmark legislation requiring the replacement of lead service lines within 10–15 years. Governor Murphy joined the JWW Lead in Drinking Water Task Force when the report was released.
  • Lead in Drinking Water in Child Care Facilities: Ensuring the Future for New Jersey’s Children: A subgroup of the Task Force published best practices for implementation and the Task Force is advocating for actions to remove lead pipes in childcare facilities and schools.
  • In 2021, a new Lead Service Line Implementation Workgroup was created to identify best practices that would help water utilities comply with the statutory goal of replacing lead service lines in 10 years.

In 2019, Chris Daggett, past chair of the JWW Task Force, with Governor Phil Murphy, Missy Rebovich, Chris Sturm, and Gary Brune.
Resources and Peers Available to Support Lead Service Line Replacements
Lead-Related Drinking Water Laws and Regulations
  • In July 2021, Governor Phil Murphy signed P.L.2021, Ch.183 into law, which requires community water systems in New Jersey to identify all lead service lines, provide public notification regarding the presence of all lead service lines, and replace all lead service lines by 2031. Lead service line inventories must be posted on the websites of water systems by January 2022. The law includes a requirement for community water systems to notify residents who have lead service lines. More information can be found here.
  • Frequently Asked Questions on Lead Service Line Replacement Law Requirements
Lead Service Line—Water Infrastructure in the News
Thank you to everyone who has worked on advancing the conversation to achieve system-level change and those working to eradicate lead in our drinking water.

In 2019, JWW Lead in Drinking Task Force members gathered at Thomas Edison State University for the release of their final recommendations report: Lead in Drinking Water: A Permanent Solution for New Jersey.

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