Louisiana taking deep dive into drinking water pipes and pumps

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BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - Louisiana is taking a deep dive into its drinking water pipes and pumps as it tries to avoid a potential disaster.

Gov. John Bel Edwards created the Rural Water Infrastructure Committee in March. It's a coordinated effort including state and federal agencies.

The Advocate reports the team's job is to guide local government authorities through a patchwork of grants, loans and technical assistance to repair old and neglected pipes and pumps.

The Democratic governor was aiming to avoid a repeat of the health emergency in the town of St. Joseph, which required $10 million to repair a system leaking lead into the drinking water.

The committee will ask lawmakers to make it easier for the state to take control of the finances of troubled municipalities and to consolidate water systems.