Efforts to improve water quality in NY budget

ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – Following high levels of the contaminant PFOA in Hoosick Falls drinking water and busted pipes and lead contamination in Flint, Michigan, water quality is taking a forefront in both chambers of New York’s government.

“The older stuff is definitely dilapidated. That stuff is a way of the past,” Matthew Scott, a project manager, said.

Scott says, unfortunately, most of the water traveling to our schools, cities and government buildings is going through outdated pipes. Some places like troy still use wooden pipes.

“It’s the new pipes that get the water out faster, get it to the structures faster.”

New equipment that like anything else, costs more money.

“Extra bonding is not something that the Republican conference is out front on these types of things, but it shows the extent of the concerns that we have,” Senator Tom O’Mara said.

Senate Republicans want to invest three billion more than the governor to prevent water contamination, clean up pollution and protect water sources.

Republicans point to recent reports by the state comptroller saying the state needs to spend $80 billion just to have an adequate water system. Assembly Democrats are concerned spending more could put New York in a budget hole.

“Does it push our debt limit over our limit, which I think it does and I think that’s something we need to be very mindful of,” Assemblyman John McDonald III said.

Scott says plans are ready to improve water quality in New York, they just need the money to make it happen.

“We need more funding to get the money to pay for all this stuff,” Scott said.

Until then, crews will continue putting patches on the problem.

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