Gantt Seeks Assurances About Safety of Rochester's Tap Water
When Mayor Lovely Warren testified at a joint legislative budget hearing in Albany Tuesday, her mind was on securing more state aid for Rochester.
But Assemblyman David Gantt wanted assurances that the city's water supply is safe. Gantt said he is concerned after hearing recent reports about lead contamination in the tap water of Flint, Michigan. Gantt asked Warren if there are still lead pipes distributing water throughout the city.
The mayor’s budget director replied that some of the lead pipes had been replaced. Gantt then questioned whether that applied to the pipes running through the city’s poorest neighborhoods.
"You don't think the leads (pipes) are doing anything to affect the kids?”, Gantt asked the mayor. “No,” said Warren. "How do you know?" Warren replied, “We actually have a very good water system in the city of Rochester. It comes from Canadice and Hemlock Lakes."
Warren said she spoke to the city's director of environmental services this week, who assured her that there are no safety problems with Rochester's water supply.
Gantt said he wants more specific information because he is concerned that there is a correlation between lead exposure and Rochester youth who have trouble learning or end up in the criminal justice system.
A spokesperson for the city of Rochester told WXXI tests are conducted regularly to determine the amount of lead and other possible contaminants in the city’s water supply. He said recent tests indicate lead levels in the water are well below the level required by the federal government.