WATERVLIET, N.Y. (NEWS10) – A contract has been awarded by the City of Watervliet to Greenwood Contracting, to replace 16 lead service lines and laterals to homes in the city. The contract is part of a New York State Department of Health Land Service Lead Line Replacement Program (LSLRP).

This is Phase II of the program to replace lead lines that are part of the city’s infrastructure, the type of lines traditionally used when older homes were built in many parts of the country. In 2020, the city completed phase I, which included replacing over a dozen waterlines containing lead on 9th Avenue, before repaving the road from 19th Street to 16th Street.

Lead water lines, because of corrosion in the pipes, may cause cardiovascular and kidney disease and reproductive problems in adults. Lead causes many issues for children, including behavior and learning problems, lower IQ and hyperactivity, slowed growth, hearing problems, and anemia.

“We can’t eliminate all lead lines, but we can chip away as many as we can and as fast as we can with the funds available,” City of Watervliet Mayor Charles Patricelli said. “We will continue to seek funding through future lead service line replacement grants to help other residents in our community as well.”

In 2021, city officials solicited from residents who wanted to be involved in Phase II of the program. Homes with children aged six and under were given priority.

Phase I started in 2020 when the city used a New York State Department of Health grant of $548,000 to repair roads and replace 41 lead laterals to 9th Avenue homes as part of the Water Supply Improvement Program. Officials say they are extremely grateful for this funding, to help Watervliet homeowners get rid of these pipes and keep city children safe and healthy.