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REPORT CONSIDERS HEALTH RISKS LOW AT EX-NIKE BASE

Potential health risks from exposure to compounds in the soil and groundwater at the former Nike missile base in Hamburg are very low, according to a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers report that will be explained Wednesday night.

A health-risk assessment, completed earlier this summer, is among the information to be disseminated at a fifth public-information meeting, which is scheduled for 7 p.m. Wednesday in Lake View Fire Hall, 2011 Lakeview Road.

"Hopefully, it will be a wrap-up meeting," said Hamburg Town Engineer Gerard M. Kapsiak. "Everything that has come out to date has been good news."

Problems at the former Nike base on Lakeview Road were reported to the town in October 1998.

Previous test results have shown small amounts of heavy metals and rocket fuel at the former base and gasoline-type compounds at the nearby homes of Jo Ann and Donald Hellert and Carrie and Robert Martin on Lakeview Road.

The Army operated the missile site from 1955 to 1968. The town took ownership and operated a landfill there through 1984, and it now has a recreation area. The Recreation, Highway and Buildings and Grounds departments also are located there.

Representatives from the Corps of Engineers, the state Department of Environmental Conservation and GZA GeoEnvironmental will be on hand for Wednesday's meeting.

Kapsiak said no representative from the state Health Department will be present. The Health Department has completed its review of additional cancer cases reported since its cancer-verification study in June. The department is in the process of finalizing its report and plans to schedule a separate public meeting to review its findings, Kapsiak said.

GZA representatives will discuss various maintenance activities and improvements that the state has directed Hamburg to take at the closed town landfill.

The DEC will discuss the town's nearly completed sledding hill project at the site and will answer any questions about the landfill.

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