43ºF

EPA: No changes to federal lead water rule until next year

FILE - This Jan. 21, 2016 file photo shows the Flint River near downtown Flint, Mich. City leaders are floating a shockingly high price to replace the city's water infrastructure damaged after the states disastrous decision in 2014 to use the...
FILE - This Jan. 21, 2016 file photo shows the Flint River near downtown Flint, Mich. City leaders are floating a shockingly high price to replace the city's water infrastructure damaged after the states disastrous decision in 2014 to use the... (Copyright by WSLS - All rights reserved)

WASHINGTON (AP) - The Environmental Protection Agency's top water regulator says officials are working to strengthen a federal rule limiting lead and copper in drinking water. That comes in the aftermath of lead-contaminated water in Flint, Michigan.

But the agency will not propose changes until next year and a final rule is expected months after that.

Joel Beauvais, acting chief of the EPA's water office, told Congress Wednesday that he and others at the EPA "certainly have a sense of urgency" about making changes to the lead and copper rule, but added: "We also want to get them right."

Beauvais made the comments as the House Energy committee began a hearing on the ongoing lead-contamination crisis in Flint.

The lead and copper rule requires water systems across the country to monitor drinking water.

(Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)