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PITTSBURGH (AP) – Pittsburgh’s beleaguered water authority will spend $50 million to replace lead service lines, give filters to low-income residents and take other steps to address the city’s lead crisis under a settlement approved by state utility regulators.

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It comes a week after the Pennsylvania attorney general’s office filed criminal charges against the Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority. The office alleges the agency mishandled a lead pipe replacement program in 2016 and 2017 and put more than 150 households at elevated risk of lead poisoning.

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The authority had previously admitted civil liability in the case and was fined $2.4 million by state environmental regulators.

Clean-water advocates hailed Thursday’s settlement as a significant step toward reducing lead levels in the city’s drinking water, and a model for other cities also struggling with lead.

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