The state of California has granted Delano nearly $5 million to remove nitrates out of the city's drinking water.
City engineer Roman Dowling said the money will be used in a three year pilot project on a local, functioning well that provides water to Delano residents. It is aimed to use new technology to remove nitrates that was found in the city's drinking water.
Despite the city's efforts to keep the water clean, residents and local officials still have concerns and prefer to buy bottled water instead.
"I never try to drink city water," Juan Alamos, a Delano resident, said.
Council member and facilities manager Joe Agguire with Delano Regional Medical Center said the hospital works diligently to make sure patients stay safe and hydrated.
"The Department of Health Services inspects our facility on an annual basis and they go through all of our documentation and records to ensure we're in compliance," Agguire said.
But minimal rainfall this past year results in pulling ground water instead of surface water which has many people concerned.
"We haven't had a lot of rain over the last year or so and that will affect our water table," Agguire said. "If the state as a whole doesn't step up and do their part, every city in California is going to be facing some challenges here pretty quick."
Delano Regional Medical Center spends about $55,000 each year making sure the drinking water is clean for patients.
Delano gynecologist Lynous Hall spoke to 23ABC about how contaminated drinking water can cause birth defects.
"It appears if there was an amount of water that contained a large amount of nitrates, it came from underground water and that's where most of the defects occurred," Hall said.
There are a total of 16 wells in Delano that provide drinking water to city residents.
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