Gov. Rauner signs bill requiring schools and day cares to test for lead

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MOLINE, Illinois - Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner signed a bill requiring schools and day cares to test drinking water for lead.

At the Moline Kids Campus, it's all about helping children grow, but most of all to provide a safe place for the more than 100 children in its care.

"If it`s not a safe environment something`s got to be done to fix it," said owner, Jim Wood.

Illinois currently mandates all day cares to test children for lead,but now the state is taking it a step further. On Monday, January 16, Governor Bruce Rauner signed a bill into law, requiring schools and day cares to test their water for lead every year.

"With all the things that have been going on in the country and that I`m amazed that everyone`s not doing it now," said Wood.

Wood says the water situation in Flint, Michigan brought much-needed awareness to the issue.

"I don`t think lead is the new poison, I mean it`s always been there, but now people are looking at it because of incidents that have happened at other parts of the country and that and they`re actually saying hey this is something that can really cause some major damage," said Wood.

One concern he has is cost. Wood is worried about the day cares who test positive for lead, "It`s going to be a very expensive fix, I mean that there could be an issue on a survival of a center because the center`s themselves run on a very low overhead."

However, he says it's better to be safe than sorry.

"If you do have a lead issue it has to be taken care of. There`s too many physical things that actual hinder children on their development and everything else, it`s something that has to be done," said Wood.

The testing applies to schools with students up to fifth grade and facilities built before 2000. Schools and day cares will have to notify the parents of the results.