February 29, 2024 02:49 PM
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At a press conference held at the home of one of its newest customers, the Suffolk County Water Authority announced the completion of a substantial water main extension project in Manorville, which makes high quality public water available to more than 100 homes. This is the culmination of a year’s long effort by residents in the community, elected officials and SCWA to expand public water to this area. These homes previously sourced their water from private wells that were threatened by contaminants such as PFAS. Now that they are connected to the SCWA’s infrastructure, these homeowners and their families will benefit from the state-of-the-art water treatment and distribution services that the Authority provides on a daily basis.


“Providing residents with the highest-quality water possible is our foremost priority at the Suffolk County Water Authority,” said SCWA Chairman Charles Lefkowitz. “When your drinking water is compromised by contamination, your entire quality of life is threatened. The people in this community haven’t been able to drink a glass of water, cook or bathe without wondering if their water was going to make them sick. They don’t need to worry anymore because SCWA is here to provide them with high quality drinking water.”


Joining Lefkowitz for the announcement were New York State Senator Dean Murray, Assemblywoman Jodi Giglio, Brookhaven Town Supervisor Dan Panico and Executive Director of Citizen’s Campaign for the Environment Adrienne Esposito.


Quotes from Elected Officials and Others:


U.S. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said, “This is a great day for Manorville, as now more families’ faucets are flowing with clean, safe drinking water. For years I have worked with residents, advocates, and local leaders to bring federal funding for safe drinking water to these families with contaminated wells, securing $3.5 million in direct federal funds in addition to the $2 million in federal American Rescue Plan aid allocated for the project by Brookhaven Town. I applaud Suffolk County Water Authority for their partnership, and for their work to expand access to secure, safe drinking water to these residents and all the residents they serve across Suffolk County.”


New York State Senator Dean Murray said, "Hats off to the men and women of the Suffolk County Water Authority, my fellow elected officials and our environmental advocates for pushing and working to get this done... but most of all, I want to thank the residents of the area for their patience and their support. Everyone involved in this project did an amazing job in making sure that all of the residents in this area now have unfettered access to good, clean, safe water."


County Executive Ed Romaine said, “I want to thank the Suffolk County Water Authority for their leadership and expertise to get this project done. High quality drinking water is so important to the quality of life of our residents. During my career in government, I have always championed the expansion of public water. I am proud to stand here today to say that I will continue to do so as County Executive.”


Brookhaven Town Supervisor Dan Panico said, "Everyone should have access to clean and safe drinking water. Through the efforts of Brookhaven Town, the Suffolk County Water Authority, and multiple levels of government, we are able to provide these residents with peace of mind and a better quality of life. I encourage everyone in this project area to contact the Suffolk County Water Authority and connect so that the benefits of this project reach as many residents and families as possible."


State Health Commissioner Dr. James McDonald said, “I thank Governor Kathy Hochul and the local leadership in Suffolk County for collaborating to secure the funding for this project and in turn protecting the health and safety of the community. All New Yorkers deserve access to clean and safeguarded drinking water and I am so pleased to see this basic right delivered here in Manorville.”


Adrienne Esposito, Executive Director of Citizens Campaign for the Environment said, “It is a joy filled moment when residents can turn on the tap and know they have clean, safe drinking water.  Calverton homeowners have been fighting for four years for this significant moment, a moment when they no longer worry about their morning coffee or making iced tea or taking a hot shower.   Today is a celebration of a cleaner, safter future.  Thank you to the efforts of Senator Schumer, the Suffolk County Health Department, the Town of Brookhaven, Suffolk County Executive Romaine and the leadership of the Suffolk County Water Authority who all listened to the community outcry and responded in unison to make a position, protective and lasting change for so many members of the public.”


Facts About the Project:


In 2017, the Suffolk County Department of Health Services (SCDHS) initiated an assessment of private supply wells in the area for PFOA and PFOS. Their testing showed the presence of the contaminant in levels above the current state standard of 10 parts per trillion. A multi-year effort between the residents and SCWA sought to reduce the cost to residents to connect to high quality public water.


Several sources of funding were secured by SCWA in 2021 and 2022. $3.5 million dollars from the US Environmental Protection Agency was made available by Senator Charles Schumer, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand and former Representative Lee Zeldin. An additional $1.6 million Intermunicipal Grant is coming from New York State. Finally, the Town of Brookhaven has agreed to provide an additional $2 million in American Rescue Plan Act funds. Without the $7.1 in grant funding, the project was expected to cost each resident tens of thousands of dollars.


In September, SCWA began construction on more than 20,000 feet of water main, beginning at the intersection of Eastport Manor Road and Halsey Manor Road, where existing water main could be tapped into. Over a three-month period, new ductile iron water main was installed along Halsey Manor Road, Mill Road, Primrose Path and other surrounding streets.


The project extends water main to 64 homes within the SCDHS survey area, with no connection costs. Public water was also made available to an additional 52 homes along the project route. SCWA says that about 70% of the homes within the survey area have connected or will soon be connected to the system. At the press conference, Lefkowitz encouraged those who have not yet signed up to connect to contact SCWA immediately.


About SCWA:


The Suffolk County Water Authority is an independent public-benefit corporation operating under the authority of the Public Authorities Law of the State of New York. Serving approximately 1.2 million Suffolk County residents, the Authority operates without taxing power on a not-for-profit basis.

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