The Suffolk County Water Authority has received a $5 million Congressionally Directed Spending grant to connect homes in Calverton where drinking water is contaminated by per-and polyfluoroalkyl substances.
The grant applies only to a specific section of Calverton in Brookhaven Town, according to Dan DuBois of SCWA. It will not benefit homes in Riverhead Town, which has its own water district and has also had problems with PFAS.
Dawn Thomas, who heads Riverhead’s Community Development Agency, said the town recently received separate grant money from the same fund.
“We got $2 million from that fund two weeks ago, and we got $3.5 million the prior year. We’re all working toward the same goal,” Ms. Thomas said.
The SCWA project will extend 21,000 feet of water main to supply 98 homes near South River Road in Calverton. These homes currently use private wells for drinking water.
In February 2022, the Suffolk County Department of Health Services initiated an investigation of PFAS contamination in the area and found it present in more than 80% of the wells tested, according to SCWA. More than half the wells tested had levels that exceeded the state standard of 10 parts per trillion, with some as high as 18 times the standard, according to SCWA.
“This funding will ensure that the residents of Peconic Lake Estates in Calverton will have access to clean, safe public water that is affordable for their families,” Brookhaven Supervisor Ed Romaine said in a press release.