Water infrastructure is going to deteriorate over the near future, regardless of whether major spending programs are passed in Washington or at the state and local level. It takes tremendous time and investment to revitalize the amount of infrastructure that requires renewal today. With this in mind, the American people should understand the consequences of failing water and sewer infrastructure has on them and their community and what they can do to stay safe, secure, and avoid financial surprises in the meantime.
While the public safety impacts listed in the Current State section are frightening, many of them are well known and publicized. One of the most common misconceptions regarding water and sewer infrastructure is that the utility or the government will take care of the problem if there is a leak on private property. Put simply, while local utilities and municipalities foot the bill for repairs to much of our declining infrastructure in the public right of way (although taxpayers and utility customers ultimately absorb some of those costs), the homeowner is primarily responsible for the service line that brings fresh water to their home as well as the sewer/septic line on their property.