#SanDiego leaders more concerned with cost than safe drinking water in schools

The real issue has never been about safe drinking water in schools…it’s been about money.

Since California began in January requiring water agencies to conduct lead tests for free at all schools that submit requests, 507 out of 1,259 schools tested statewide have been in San Diego County.

That number dwarfs second-place Los Angeles County, with 100 schools tested, third-place Orange County, with 85 schools tested, and every other county in the state.

Nearly half of the local tests have been conducted by the city of San Diego’s Public Utilities Department, which supplies water to all 198 campuses of the San Diego Unified School District and roughly 180 other campuses in neighboring districts.

Department officials attribute the wide disparity in testing to more media attention on the issue in the San Diego region, spurred partly by San Ysidro officials raising concerns last fall about lead in school drinking water.

The department has spent $481,000 testing water at 236 campuses — 198 in San Diego Unified and 38 outside that district — and is eager to have the state reimburse the department and its 275,000 water and sewer customers.

Source: San Diego Union-Tribune


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