Administrator of USEPA Visits GCWW Today to Benchmark Success of Enhanced Lead Program

Administrator of USEPA Visits GCWW Today to Benchmark Success of
Enhanced Lead Program

Greater Cincinnati Water Works (GCWW) Director, Cathy Bernardino Bailey, and other GCWW staff hosted a visit today from Mr. Scott Pruitt, Administrator of the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA), and Peter Grevatt, USEPA Office of Ground Water and Drinking Water Director; to discuss the Enhanced Lead Program and visit participating sites.

A team of GCWW professionals met with the officials to review the elements of the program, valuable partnerships, and ongoing developments. This was an excellent opportunity for GCWW to highlight their expertise and success, and discuss efforts to continue providing the community with high-quality drinking water and exceptional services.

Enhanced Lead Program

The GCWW Enhanced Lead Program continues to be implemented with a two-tier approach:

  • Tier 1 is education and communication about the risk of lead in drinking water. Solutions in Tier 1, include tools such as a new website, dedicated phone line, lead line lookup map, and free water testing to residents, schools and daycares.
  • Tier 2 consists of removing all known lead service lines located within the City of Cincinnati, establishing a property assessment program to reimburse GCWW for the cost of replacing lead service lines on private property, and establishing an assistance program to help low-income customers with the costs of removing their lead service line on private property. Cincinnati Ordinance No. 185-2017 authorizes and empowers GCWW to establish this new program to replace lead service lines in the City and states that it is in the best interest of the public health, safety, and general welfare of the community to remove these lines.

National Attention

In just three months, 35{8575174f699b9be9b7edddae9547526484f3ecb88605cc3ac4c0cfe05558ca80} of customers contacted have signed contracts to join this cost-sharing program and have their lead service lines removed. This percentage is a great start and represents involvement at higher rates than programs in other cities. Due to this success, the program is gaining national attention and quickly being recognized as a model for other utilities.

Visit Lead.myGCWW.org for more information about the Enhanced Lead Program