DUNKIRK – Members of the Chadwick Bay Development Corporation heard updates about the proposed Northern Chautauqua Water District during a meeting Thursday in the local Bob Evans restaurant.
County Executive Vincent Horrigan provided a list of rates and annual usage by townships. The county has been assisting with the planning and future development of the system. Horrigan has to present the issue to the County Legislature to receive financing.
“Since the last meeting, we have had a presentation to the water agency board with unanimous support,” he said.
The regional water project will include service to customers who have not had municipal water and will provide a stable source of water – from Dunkirk and Fredonia water treatment plants.
The Chadwick Bay group, which started the planning for the regional water district in the north end of Chautauqua County, applied for preliminary funding to study the issue and received $2 million in grants for the early stages of a program. The county executive has been promoting the project as a benefit to future economic development and as a plan to provide safe water to more people in the area.
“It is finally starting to move along,” said Dan Schrantz, chairman of the development group and supervisor of the Town of Portland.
Horrigan said part of the Town of Sheridan had not been included in the first phase of the water project. But he said that after further consideration, this section now is included. Richard Purol, Dunkirk supervisor, said he is pleased about this development because it provides a connection near an industrial area.
Horrigan said an interconnecting line between the City of Dunkirk and the Village of Fredonia also is part of the project, with a new service line connecting customers in Brocton.
Horrigan said he will be setting up independent meetings with communities that are part of the new water system. Intermunicipal agreements among the communities, the water agency and the county will be required. Horrigan said he hopes to have those prepared for each community in April and May, with approval by the Legislature soon afterward.
Brocton Mayor David Hazelton said he plans to compare the system’s rates with increases that had been projected if his community made repairs to its own system.
Town of Dunkirk Supervisor Richard Purol asked about water rates for customers who live in the City of Dunkirk and the Village of Fredonia. Horrigan said that both communities will gain customers, and added that neither will require a rate change.
Future plans show the district expanding to g Silver Creek, the Town of Hanover, Westfield and Ripley.
“I want to thank the leaders around this table, especially Mayor Steve Keefe and Mayor A.J. Dolce,” Horrigan said. The two men represent Fredonia and Dunkirk and will provide the treated water as the sources for the regional system.