Barnstable Town Council Asked to Approve $1.1 Million for Hyannis Water System Cleanup

KA_Hyannis_Historic Main street sign_11315BARNSTABLE – Barnstable Town Council is being asked to approve money for the construction of three buildings that will assist in the cleanup of the Hyannis water system.

A bond of $1.1 million from the Water Supply Division Enterprise account would fund the buildings that will house three carbon treatment units at the Mary Dunn well field.

“We couldn’t just continue to operate the Mary Dunn wells in the summer only, we’re going to need them year-round, hence the request for the buildings, and so they’ll be heated and dehumidified so those wells can pump year-round and we don’t end up with a water shortage of any type at all,” said Barnstable DPW Director Dan Santos.

Santos added that with approval, they could begin construction on the buildings right away.

“We anticipate that if the council approves the appropriation on September 15th, we’d have these buildings at least type to weather and available to be heated by about the first of December,” said Santos.

The Environmental Protection Agency lowered its advisory threshold for perfluorinated contaminants in May and the Barnstable Department of Public Works found that there were excessive levels of the contaminants in the Hyannis water system.

Crews found that the contaminants were at the Mary Dunn wells and were the result of the fire extinguishing foams from the Barnstable County fire training academy.

As a result, the town made bottled water available to residents and issued a health advisory warning pregnant women, nursing mothers and infants not to drink the water.

The advisory remained in effect until July, when town officials declared that the water is safe to consume and use.

Shortly after that declaration, the town filed a lawsuit against the county for the contamination, seeking $2 million in damages.

Santos said that he hopes to have the bond money reimbursed by the county in the future.

The town and county embarked on settlement negotiations and according to Santos, it has gone well, but could continue for weeks and months.

By JUSTIN SAUNDERS, CapeCod.com Newscenter

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