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Wallkill Valley TimesWhat’s that smell?

What’s that smell?

“We’re stressed on water,” reported Crawford Town Supervisor Charles Carnes at last week’s town board meeting. “We have some good operating wells, other wells that aren’t so good.”

Though it hasn’t been a particularly dry summer in and around the hamlet of Pine Bush, there have been water issues that the town has needed to address

Carnes reported that the town’s DeWitt well was shut down on July 27 because of high sulfur content. Though the water was still drinkable, the foul rotten eggs smell and oily content makes it undesirable. Thomas McKelvey, the town’s water superintendent, said the sulfur also made it hard on water customers who used water softener.

“There’s so much sludge in the water, it plugs up the back of the washing machine,” complained one man from Kerilee Court. He said his water was so dark, at times, that he couldn’t see the bottom of his toilet.

“This thing has been going on for years,” he complained. “I’ve been here for 30 years.”

Town Councilman Daniel Flanick said it would be cost prohibitive to attempt to treat the sulfur content. The town, therefore, is forced to look for additional sources of water.

“The number one concern is to make sure we don’t run out of water,” Carnes said. “This summer we’ve had a good amount of rain, but with school coming on now there will be no room for error.”

In the meantime, he added, there has been no flushing of hydrants in town.

The town is exploring two new sources of water to complement its existing wells. One is a well being tested by a private driller on the DuBois property that would yield 170 gallons per minute. Carnes said a line could be run down Route 52 and tie into the town’s system near the McDonalds. If all the tests are confirmed, drilling could begin this fall.

The other possibility is to obtain water from Orange County.

‘They told me as of a few weeks ago,” Carnes said. “ If everything went perfect, we would dig the line next spring (for the county water). It would come down Hill Avenue.”

Flanick assured residents that the new wells would have little or no sulfur and that the town would be able to flush the hydrants regularly.

“Once we have good quality water, we can send the notice out and flush the system, the way it’s supposed to be flushed,” he said. In the meantime, a robocall system is being prepared that would notify residents of when hydrant flushing would take place. It is expected to be ready by September.

In other business, the town board gave the Pine Bush Youth Football and Cheerleading program permission to use the Lybolt Road fields during the football season that began this past Sunday, and runs through Nov. 13. It also approved the request of the Pine Bush Lions Club to hold its annual Harvest Festival on Sept. 16 and close Main Street in the process. Rain date is the following day.

The town board held a due process hearing on four properties that had not been properly maintained. The lawns had not been cut and weeds exceeded 10 inches in height. The town board voted to cut the grass on the properties on Goldin Blvd, 209 Center St. 383 Gillespie St. and 54 Edson Drive. None of the property owners were present at the hearing.

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