The Suffolk County Water Authority announced today it is requesting bids from contractors to extend approximately 20,000 feet of water main to homes in Manorville impacted by PFAS contamination, a major milestone in a multi-year effort to bring public water to the area. The Suffolk County Department of Health Services assessed private wells, which are used to supply the homes with drinking water and discovered the presence of the carcinogenic chemical PFAS.
SCWA is requesting bids from contractors to undertake the first phase of the project, which will extend water main along Halsey Manor Road to reach homes in the vicinity of Primrose Path. Once SCWA selects a contractor, construction will begin this summer and is expected to take three months to complete. In the next phase, SCWA will begin connecting residents to its system and supply them with reliable, high-quality drinking water. In total, 116 homes could be connected through this project by the end of the year.
“Drinking water is fundamental to a good quality of life and we take it for granted when there isn’t a concern,” said SCWA Chairman Charles Lefkowitz. “When you discover, though, that the water you use to drink, cook or bathe could be making you sick, it’s absolutely devastating. I am proud that SCWA took the initiative to find a way to make this project viable and now we are nearly ready to get to work on getting these folks the high-quality water they need.”
The project is funded by grants secured by SCWA. $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.
“We knew this was never going to work if each resident was expected to pay huge amounts of money for a problem, they didn’t cause in the first place,” added Jeffrey Szabo, SCWA Chief Executive Officer. “So, we worked with our partners in the federal, state and local governments to find a way to make this happen. We are deeply appreciative to them, and I know the residents are as well.”
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.