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Utilities can now finance replacements of lead water lines in Wisconsin homes



La Crosse outlier as compared to most cities in state 

For around 170,000 homes in Wisconsin, a relief from a known toxin may be on the way.

On Tuesday, the state Senate passed a bill that would allow water utilities to finance replacements of lead water lines that run from homes to municipal water mains – known as laterals.

State senator Chris Larson said the measure is key to speeding up the replacement process throughout the state.

“It’s clear we have a lead crisis on our hands,” Larson said. “It’s clear that we need to be doing something about it.

“This is a crisis that was pushed by the government or, in some places, it was required that the water carried from the main to the house had to be using lead and nothing else.”

La Crosse is one of the few older communities in the state in which those lead laterals don’t exist – though some lead connections known as goosenecks do still connect lateral pipes with the water mains.

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