What's the delay in replacing lead pipes in Flint? - WNEM TV 5

ASKING TOUGH QUESTIONS

What's the delay in replacing lead pipes in Flint?

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LANSING, MI (WNEM) -

“When we began our fight in Lansing to replace these pipes, to raise the issue of lead in the water, people had a don’t ask, don’t tell attitude,” Lansing Mayor Virgil Bernero told TV5.

With lead water lines being ripped out of the ground and replaced in Lansing, many Flint residents continue to ask why it isn’t happening in their city.

Mayor Karen Weaver has been asking the State of Michigan for exactly that for several weeks now.

Lansing Mayor Virgil Bernero tells TV5 he can’t comprehend why Governor Snyder, and the State of Michigan, continues to delay digging up Flint and replacing the lead laced service lines.

"We were asking Tough Questions 10 years ago. Now, because of Flint, I think you're going to have people asking Tough Questions around the country, and I think they should," Bernero said.

While in Lansing Monday, TV5 saw first-hand how more than 13,500 lead service lines have been replaced by Lansing’s Board of Water and Light. Work that’s cost just over $42 million since 2014.

“We stand ready to advise Flint on any technical issues that they would need. Our learning curve, what mistakes we made that they can avoid. Because they are under a time crunch to get this done,” said Dick Peefley, General Manager of Lansing Board of Water and Light.

Governor Snyder's office has released a statement regarding the issue:

Work is underway to replace lead pipes. The state is partnering with city of Flint leaders to very quickly address the high-risk, high-priority areas in the city. Gov. Snyder said last week the city and state are reaching out to a Flint-based firm to analyze the city's pipe network for maximum efficiency.

The timetable for that work to begin is still unclear.

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