Officials have replaced boiler room valves in two Williamston schools where lead was found over acceptable limits and will address other fixtures where lead was present by June. The valves at Williamston High School and Explorer Elementary did not carry drinking water, according to Superintendent Narda Murphy. But water tested by Testing Engineers & Consultants on Feb. 13 contained lead levels above the threshold of 0.015 mg/L. Small amounts of lead were also found in a teacher’s lounge faucet in Williamston High School, a restroom drinking fountain in Explorer Elementary, a kitchen sink and 7th grade hall drinking fountain in Williamston’s Middle School, and a maintenance garage bathroom sink.
The water in all of Williamston’s schools is being tested as a precautionary action, school officials say. Narda Murphy, superintendent for Williamston Community Schools, said that the school is working with Testing Engineers & Consultants Inc. to test the water. Greg Talberg, one of the trustees on Williamston’s School board, asked at the Jan. 18 School Board meeting if the water at the middle school had been tested yet, according to unapproved minutes from the meeting. Talberg said in an interview this week that he asked the question due to what is happening with the Flint water crisis and due to a strange odor and taste in Williamston Middle School’s water.
By GREG MONAHAN
Capital News Service
Michigan received $152,000 in federal grants for 2014 to monitor the cleanliness of its lakes and beaches. That’s more than $200,000 less than the state was allotted in 2013, according to Department of Environmental Quality toxicologist Shannon Briggs. And state lawmakers have already spoken for nearly two-thirds of this year’s money by allocating $100,000 of it to the Macomb County Health Department in southeast Michigan. “We had a re-direct of $100,000 of that $150,000,” said Brad Wurfel, communications director for the Department of Environmental Quality. “It is done.”
The downside is that there is far less money allocated to testing water safety elsewhere in the state this year.