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Barrett asks Trump for more money to replace lead service lines

On the same day President Donald Trump visited Wisconsin for the first time since he was elected to office, Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett asked that the federal government spend more money on helping the city replace its lead water-service lines.

The city is home to about 40 percent of the state’s 170,000 lead service lines, according to the mayor’s office. With the average cost of replacing a full service line coming in at $11,000, a full overhaul in Milwaukee would require spending about $770 million. Barrett said a price tag like that will not be affordable unless governments at all levels work together.

This year, the city is working with the state and federal governments to award $2.6 million in forgivable loans through the Drinking Water State Revolving Loan Fund. Barrett warned, though, that the amount allowed for the replacement of lead pipes will not go far enough.

“We share the goal of putting more Americans back to work,” Barrett said in a statement. “I am asking President Trump to consider the tremendous workforce development and economic potential we will realize when all of our children have access to safe, lead-free drinking water.”

Trump made a stop in Kenosha on Tuesday to tour the headquarters of the tool manufacturer Snap-on Inc.

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