More than $1.7 million dollars in state funding has been granted to help upgrade a street and water system of a Livingston County community.

The Michigan Strategic Fund announced Tuesday that the City of Howell would be among 11 communities across the state to split more than $16 million dollars in Community Development Block Grant Infrastructure Capacity Enhancement grants to make improvements or upgrades to their existing public infrastructure systems.

Howell’s share comes to $1,729,179 and will allow the City to make substantial improvements to the downtown streetscape and infrastructure in the 100 block of North State Street
and the adjacent alleyways. It will also be used to remove some of the last lead-jointed pipes from the city’s water system and replace the storm sewer to help drainage. Howell was up for the grant program in 2017, but was ultimately not selected. In the summer of 2018, staff with the Michigan Economic Development Corporation reviewed the list of eligible community applications that were not funded and selected 11 of those communities, including Howell, for this latest round.

In 2018, Michigan updated its Lead and Copper Rule, making Michigan the only state to deviate from EPA standards and representing the strictest lead action level in the country. The new rule will eliminate all lead lines in the state over the next 20 years by requiring local utilities to replace all lead and galvanized water service lines between the publicly-owned water main and a resident's water meter by 2040 at an average replacement rate of 5% per year. (JK)