By Melanie Lekocevic
Capital Region Independent Media
RAVENA — The village is continuing to compile data on lead water services lines running from the village’s water supply into local homes.
The village initially announced last January that a new federal mandate required that the Department of Public Works obtain photographs of water service lines into all homes to determine which residences have water lines that are made of lead or copper.
Village Foreman Henry Traver said at the Jan. 2 meeting of the village board that the village is continuing to compile that data and has until October to complete its report.
Residents whose homes have not yet been evaluated can expect village employees to go door to door to collect the needed information.
“We’ve got about 700 in already, so we have done well over 50%, and we’re a lot better than where a lot of municipalities are right now,” Traver told the board.
Any homes that do not complete the evaluation will automatically go on the list as needing new water service pipes.
Drinking water can be a source of lead exposure, according to the New York State Department of Health.
“Service pipes that contain lead can corrode, causing lead to enter drinking water,” according to the department’s website.
“The presence of a lead service line does not always mean a home has a lead issue,” according to the Health Department, but homes with lead in the water can present a health concern.
The village is still trying to determine what the guidelines are for replacing lead and copper water pipes.
Mayor Bill Misuraca asked how the village would be expected to pay for replacing the pipes.
“Where is that money coming from?” Misuraca asked.
There are grants available to cover those costs, Traver responded.
“We applied for multiple grants and the state Health Department called me up and said whatever municipalities requested money but didn’t get money, they are pushing for us to get money,” Traver said. “So fingers crossed, we will get something, hopefully.”
VAN BUREN LIGHTING
On another issue, the village is also looking to increase lighting on Van Buren Avenue, Traver said.
“It was brought to our attention from several of our residents,” Traver said. “Van Buren is a much darker street than any other street in the village. There are more lights there that are low wattage.”
Traver said he called the utility company Central Hudson seeking improved lighting by replacing the current bulbs with higher-wattage lighting.
“We are not going to add any lights, we are just going to go with the lights that are there and just increase the wattage a bit to brighten up that street a little bit more because it is a pretty dark street compared to other places,” he said.
FRIENDSHIP FESTIVAL PLANNING
In other news, the village’s Friendship Festival Committee is gearing up to begin planning for the traditional end-of-summer event.
“The date is a little different this year,” Misuraca said. “It’s the week before Labor Day, which is Aug. 24, so still a Saturday. The committee will be meeting, I hope, before the end of this month.”
The committee is seeking volunteers to help organize, plan and run the festival, which takes place each year at Mosher Park.
“It’s informal and it’s a good time, and we need volunteers,” Misuraca said. “I know we beg every year, but we would like to build a real solid committee to keep this thing going. So, if you have any interest whatsoever, please feel free to contact us here at the office, through email, or stop us and tell us.”