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Athens has water problems

Aug 10, 2023 12:55 pm

Nancy Kern reports for Columbia-Greene Media that for the second time in a month the drinking water in the Village of Athens appears dirty and has a strange odor. Village Department of Public Works Superintendent Chris Sprague and Village Trustee Joshua Lipsman said the water discoloration is from iron. Sprague said, “There is a culmination of a few things happening.... There gets buildup on the lines. We hadn’t flushed the system because we only had one filter operational in the water plant. We rebuilt the other one and wanted to be sure it was working properly, but then the water table went down, and we felt it was not a good time to flush. When the rain last month caused turbidity of the reservoir, we started flushing with the hydrants. We did a low pressure flush, and last week we went around and flushed again.” Sprague says boiling water is unnecessary, but that residents should check the screens on the ends of their faucets for sediment. Lipsman said, “The water has an odor due to the vegetative growth on the reservoir at Hollister Lake.... The second component is the pipes that flow underground that bring the water to people’s homes. That system was initially installed at least 100 years ago and has been piecemeal replaced, maintained and upgraded over the years. With a village like Athens, we don’t have the financial wherewithal to address that in a comprehensive fashion.” Lipsman also said that Athens does not have a backup source of water for emergencies. He said, “It’s actually unclear at the moment.... There are understandings all around, but they aren’t the same understandings. The mayor is in the process of researching meeting minutes from 2016 when there was community involvement with this issue. At the moment we don’t know exactly what the situation is. I personally think it’s an important thing that needs to be resolved.” Read more about this story at HudsonValley360.com.

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