Flint officials say milestone reached in lead line work

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DETROIT – Flint officials say they are a year ahead of schedule in tackling a court-mandated order to deal with lead service lines as the Michigan city recovers from its contaminated water crisis, but an environmental group disputes it.

The city says it’s checked more than 18,000 service lines, and replaced 7,700. Mayor Karen Weaver said Tuesday there are between 10,000 and 12,000 more to check and officials have dealt with those deemed the highest priority.

The Natural Resources Defense Council, which is part of a lawsuit over the lead issue, says the city hasn’t prioritized homes most likely to have lead and galvanized steel pipes. It adds thousands of the excavated pipes have been copper.

A landmark legal settlement reached early last year calls for fully removing the lead pipes by the end of next year.

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