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      Waste Watch: New fire hydrant regs could hose taxpayers

      U .S. Senator Chuck Schumer is calling upon the EPA to delay new rules that could force municipalities to replace newly installed fire hydrants.

      In announcing Schumer's appearance Wednesday at the Onondaga County Water Authority, the Senator's office said "the Fed EPA just released rules that absurdly apply new standards for the amount of lead that fire hydrants can contain."

      According to a news release, the EPA has interpreted a 2011 law that subjects fire hydrants to reduced lead standards "due to the rare occurrence that hydrants provide drinking water." Schumer says the new rules took municipalities across the nation by surprise and would force them to replace brand new fire hydrants after January 4th, 2014.

      The Senator points out that a hydrant costs $1200.00 or more. Schumer is calling upon the EPA to exempt existing fire hydrants that were purchased by municipalities including the City of Syracuse and the Onondaga County Water Authority before the new guidelines.