State Senator Hugh T. Farley said, “As our children head back to school, I'm pleased to announce that the Governor has just signed into law a measure I helped cosponsored to protect children from potentially being exposed to dangerous levels of lead in drinking water. This new law will ensure that periodic tap water testing for lead is conducted by schools and BOCES across New York State to obtain important information about the quality of students’ drinking water.”
According to the state Department of Health (DOH), lead can harm a young child’s growth, behavior, and ability to learn. While some schools in New York conduct testing for lead, not all do, and this law will create a standard testing protocol to ensure students are protected.
School districts and BOCES will undergo periodic tap testing at a frequency to be set by DOH. Buildings designated as “lead free” under federal law will be exempt, schools testing negative would be given waivers, and schools with water containing unacceptable amounts of lead will be eligible for additional financial assistance for the costs of testing and remediation.
This critically important public health measure will help to ensure that children in communities all across New York State can grow up healthy and strong, and free from the serious health threats posed by lead poisoning.
I am truly proud to have supported this important new law, and I look forward to all of our children having happy, healthy and successful school years, Senator Farley said.