CASSADAGA - Mill Street residents in Cassa-daga have been experiencing a major water problem.
Cassadaga Village Board members listened and had that problem placed before them at Wednesday night's meeting.
Mill Street resident Karen Waite spoke for the group of angry residents.
OBSERVER Photos by Jasmine Willis
From left: Trustee Ron DeChard, Mayor LeeAnn Lazarony, and Attorney Mike Norris listen to village residents’ complaints about their water.
"We are here tonight to share our water with you," she said as she poured rusty-colored water into dixie cups for the village officials. "We don't know from from day to day what to expect from our water faucets."
"Is the water going to be clear? Is it going to be the shade of rust? Will it be white and cloudy? Will it smell like chlorine? Will it taste like metal? Will it gush out in a burst of air?" she continued. "From Aug. 9 to (Wednesday), we had five days where our water was not satisfactory. We brought samples from other Mill Street houses."
Waite placed the brown-colored water jugs in front of the village board.
"This is what we are ingesting internally and externally," she said. "This is what we brush our teeth in, what we bathe in, what we drink, what we cook with, what we wash our clothes in."
Waite then brought a dirty white sweatshirt to the board as an example.
"This is what our white clothes look like after washed in our wonderful water," she said, gesturing to the shirt. "Everyone else is having the same problem with white clothes.
"We are paying as much for our water and the debt service as everyone else in the village," Waite continued. "The water we are getting in our homes is not worth what we are paying for. We have been given excuse after excuse. We don't want any more excuses, we want action. We don't want to know if the problem is going to be solved, we want to know when."
Residents wanted to know who is going to pay for the loads of white clothes they have lost because of this situation.
Mayor LeeAnn Lazarony is glad the residents came to the board and brought this to its attention.
"No one has said anything directly to me," she said. "It is not acceptable. I can't give answers on how to fix it until I talk to some people. I have to find out how much it will cost to replace the line. I need to find out if the pumps need to be flushed more often so sediment doesn't sit in there."
Lazarony explained the fire department uses the hydrant on Mill Street to draw from the pumps, and this is a big part of the problem.
"It stirs everything up in there," she said. "They pump the water out of that system. Unfortunately because of the old lines, it makes it worse. Best thing we can do is flush the lines out a lot more. I am going to talk with the engineer and see what we can do about this. You deserve good water."
Don Waite noted it doesn't give the fire department the right to contaminate their water.
"We pay a lot more money for our water," he said.
Karen Waite feels residents should be notified when the fire department uses their pumps.
"We won't use our water," she said. Considering we don't know what the sediment is."
Lazarony told them she would have the water tested and find out what to do from there.