Lead and Copper Water Service Line Inventory

The Federal Lead and Copper Rule requires that every Community public water system develop an inventory of the water service lines for all connections to the system and a plan to correct any lead lines that are  found. The service lines start at the water main and extend to the building (s) being served. The purpose of the inventory is to determine and replace any lead service connections. Replacement of lead service lines is the responsibility of the water system.

It is very important to note that the Champlain Water District, which provides the water to all customers on the Town water system adds orthophosphate to the treated water before distribution to the system.  This safely coats all pipe surfaces with a thin film that doesn’t allow the release of lead into the system.  The public water system is protected from lead in the water system through this practice. However, this operating practice does not relieve the impacted community water systems served by CWD from the need to replace any lead service lines.

Town Public Works staff has been working to complete the required Survey since the fall of 2022.  The completed results and a written plan to confirm any unknown or lead service lines is due to the state by October 16, 2024. The Town opted to utilize an in-house approach rather than the services of an outside consultant.

So far, there is no evidence to be found that would indicate lead in the Town water service lines with the potential exception of lines in the Fort. Inspection of the service line plumbing in the Fort has so far indicated no lead lines entering buildings but this could change as more inspections are completed.   No service line records exist for the Fort, except for newer buildings. Physical excavation may be mandated in later phases if the entry for a pipe connection is “unknown”.

Work on the inventory is ongoing and will not be completed until late summer of 2024. A grant was obtained from the State to perform the inventory as well as to prepare a  plan for any further actions that will be required.  

The Town Public Works may be contacting some individual property owners to obtain access to verify the size and material of the  water service line entering the building. Water system users are strongly urged to support this effort. The alternative may be a need to excavate the service line in the future if it falls into the category of “unknown”.  Staff does not want to excavate lawns when a very quick inspection at or near the water meter will provide the needed information.

Any questions relating to this work can be directed to Dennis Lutz at dlutz@essex.org, Aaron Martin at amartin@essex.org or Ann Costandi at acostandi@essex.org. Also, contact can be made through the Public Works office at (802) 878-1344.