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BLOOMFIELD, NJ -- Following the announcement by City of Newark officials yesterday that some water filters given to residents to reduce lead levels may not be functioning properly, the Township of Bloomfield is announcing that it will immediately begin a comprehensive test of its own filters. At the direction of Mayor Michael Venezia, Bloomfield will work to ensure that all residents have safe drinking water by first testing filters at homes that previously had higher than allowable lead levels, and the Township will also make filter testing available to any of the 3,000 residents who have received them. Residents can sign up for testing by calling 973-680-4009.
“While lead levels in Bloomfield have never tested nearly as high as those in Newark, we still took the proactive step of distributing water filters to thousands of residents and it is very disturbing to learn that some of those filters may not be working as intended,” said Mayor Venezia. “Everyone has a right to safe, clean drinking water and I want our community to rest assured that we will do whatever is necessary to ensure that this is the case here in Bloomfield.”
In the past year Bloomfield has taken decisive action to protect residents from lead. The Township has replaced water service lines at 30 homes that were known to have tested positive for lead previously and recently received a $1.1 million state loan to replace many more. The Township has also begun a comprehensive water main cleaning project throughout town to remove sediment from water main lines.
Additionally, improvements made by Newark in May have positively impacted Bloomfield. Recent test results of Bloomfield households revealed improved testing levels, and Township officials remain hopeful that further improvements in the Newark system can be expedited. Officials have held numerous community meetings to discuss the issue and the Township is now working to install a new water interconnection that will remove Bloomfield from the Newark water system. Mayor Venezia has sent a request to meet directly with the State Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Catherine McCabe to assist Bloomfield in addressing the Township’s concerns with Newark’s water system.
“While we are working towards the goal of no longer relying on Newark’s water system, at this point we remain a direct user of the system and thus we are always concerned whenever there is a problem with that system,” said Mayor Venezia. “I am hopeful that the State DEP can provide whatever assistance is needed in addressing the current concerns as well as expediting our efforts to install our new water supply system.”
The Township of Bloomfield is hosting a public forum on Monday, August 19 at 6:00pm in the Civic Center at 84 Broad St. to address the lead issue. For any additional information please contact Dan Knitzer at 201-864-0600 or firstname.lastname@example.org