Flint lawmaker pushes bill to lower lead levels in drinking water

 Flint lawmaker pushes bill to lower lead levels in drinking water
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The congressman who represents Flint, Mich., is introducing a bill that would require the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to lower the acceptable levels of lead in drinking water.

Rep. Dan KildeeDaniel (Dan) Timothy Kildee Flint lawmaker pushes bill to lower lead levels in drinking water House adopts Flint water measures in spending bill House members, staff offered blood testing after lead found in water MORE (D-Mich.) said the EPA needs to strengthen its Lead and Copper Rule for the first time since 1991, especially in light of the water crisis in Flint. 

His bill, introduced Thursday, would require the EPA to update its rule and expand water sampling and testing. 

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“After what happened to my hometown of Flint, we must strengthen and update the Lead and Copper Rule to provide greater transparency for families," Kildee said in a statement. 

"Updating this outdated rule will not only protect public health, it will restore public confidence in their water systems. We must learn from the failures of government that lead to the Flint water crisis to prevent a similar man-made emergency from happening elsewhere."

The EPA in October outlined potential changes for its lead water regulations, including quicker replacement of lead water pipes, stronger mandates for corrosion controls, more water sampling and expanded lead exposure prevention for pregnant woman and children.

The crisis in Flint — where a switch in water sources and poor treatment methods caused a lead outbreak in drinking water — pushed the EPA to work faster on its overhaul of the Lead and Copper Rule. The agency has yet to finalize any changes to the regulation.