Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone announced on April 13 that Suffolk County will provide $1.5 million in Clean Water funds towards the cost to provide pure and clean water to the 64 homes in Manorville. The grant will provide the funds needed to complete the project in its entirety.
Riverhead has secured all the funding for the Suffolk County Water Authority (SCWA) project to move forward to complete the project. Supervisor Yvette Aguiar said. “I applaud County Executive Steve Bellone and his team for working collaboratively with the Town of Riverhead and the Suffolk County Water Authority on this public health effort, which has been ongoing for decades.”
“These homeowners have been waiting for too long for a definitive answer about the cost of connecting their homes to the public water supply,” said Bellone. “We are here today to eliminate any uncertainty about how this project will be paid for. With today’s announcement, we make it clear that these families will be connected to a safe and reliable source of drinking water at no cost. This day has been a long time coming.”
“This is a great day in Manorville,” U.S. Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer said in a statement. “For years I have worked with residents, advocates, and Riverhead Town to bring federal funding for safe drinking water to Manorville and Calverton families with contaminated water wells, providing $13.5 million in federal funds directly through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. Thanks to County Executive Bellone, the final needed funding is on its way from the County Water Infrastructure Fund. I applaud the work of Riverhead Supervisor Yvette Aguiar, the Suffolk County Water Authority, New York State and State Senator Palumbo for their work alongside mine to secure safe water for these residents.”
“Last year, when I requested assistance from the County Executive, he replied, ‘I will see what I can do.’ Today, it is mission accomplished!” Aguiar said.
The Town of Riverhead’s efforts to address the need to provide clean and pure water to its residents was supported by many public officials, the entire Riverhead Town Board and with strong public support. The wells have tested for many contaminants, including Perfluoroalkyl and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS)/Perfluoralkyl Carboxylate (PFOA) in excess of NYS limits. These substances were developed in the 1940s and 1950s, and commonly used in firefighting foams.
Aguiar said, in 2020, she immediately advocated for the creation of an Engineering Map and Plan, which was funded by the Town of Riverhead. “Today’s announcement will allow the project to be fully completed. Partnering with the Suffolk County Water Authority (SCWA) last year, jump-started the effort. Thank you, Jeff Szabo.”
“We are incredibly grateful to County Executive Steven Bellone and his entire team, including Deputy County Executive Peter Scully and Suffolk County Commissioner for Planning and Environment Sarah Lansdale,” Aguiar said. “Combined with previous efforts of Senator Schumer, we can now begin this important project and see it through fruition. I also want to thank Senator Kristen Gillibrand, Congressman Nick LaLota, former Congressman Lee Zeldin, NYS Senator Anthony Palumbo, NYS Assemblywoman Jodi Giglio, Suffolk County Legislator Al Krupski and the entire Town Board, who all have all rigorously supported this effort.”