New Jersey's two U.S. senators and congressman Bill Pascrell have reintroduced a bill to make it easier to finance water infrastructure improvements.
The elected officials say that frequent water main breaks in the state, like one in Newark on Sunday, are evidence of a crumbling system.
They say fixing the pipes would benefit everyone, "growing our economy, growing jobs, preserving our health and safety," said Democratic Sen. Cory Booker.
The average age of water mains in northern New Jersey is 70 years old and some are around from before the Civil War, according to officials, who estimate that New Jersey will need $45 billion in water system upgrades in the next 20 years.
Residents in Newark say they're concerned about aging pipes.
Ana Ramos, who lives in a building close to 100 years old, is so cautious that she only uses tap water for cooking and bathing.
"I use the bottled water because you never know what's in the water," she said.