2018-05-15 / News

Halcottsville Resident Concerned About Water Quality

By Melissa Johns

During Middletown’s May 9 board meeting, Halcottsville resident Chris Engel approached the town council about poor water quality in his neighborhood. According to Engel, the water has been brown for about two years, and effects daily activities like washing dishes, clothes and bathing. Engel provided photos from before and after the Halcottsville water tank cleaning on May 7.

“One of the issues that still remains is that the water is still not very clear yet,” said Engel. “I don’t think we can go on with the water the way it is.”

Robert Payne from LVDV Operations explained the tank cleaning process and what will come next.

A half inch of sludge was found in the tank and a sample was sent out to be tested. Results are expected to be received within two to three weeks. Further action was taken on Tuesday, when Payne flushed the area’s fire hydrants. Plans were to flush them two more times that week.

Payne and Supervisor Carl Davis discussed potential solutions including installation of a chemical pump or filtration system. A unanimous decision was made to revisit these concerns in a few weeks when the water settles from the tank cleaning and hydrant flushing. Payne expects to get estimates on a chemical pump in the meantime in the event that further action is needed when the water is reevaluated.

An old state Highway, 5384, was discovered when plans were created to change out a culvert box in town. The highway was abandoned by New York state in 1933, and ownership transferred to the town of Middletown. A resolution was requested to terminate its easement document, as the physical road no longer exists and the area is now inhabited by several homes. The purpose of this termination is to prevent possible burdens for the current residents. The resolution was adopted and agreed upon by all board members.

Board member Brian Sweeney discussed potential street light replacements in all three of Middletown’s lighting districts. A $4,600 quote was received from NYSEG to replace about 102 lights with LEDs to help reduce the town’s electric bills. Sweeney estimated the payback on this project to take less than three years because of the money LED lights would save and the possibility of receiving a grant through O’Connor to cover half of the expenses. The town board agreed to send NYSEG its required letter of interest to get Middletown on the waiting list for these replacements, which are first come, first serve, according to Sweeney.

Next month’s town of Middletown board meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, June 13 at the town office building, 42339 state Highway 28, Margaretville.

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