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Lynden questions comments on water supply

Even without upgrades to the village’s water system, Fredonia’s infrastructure can support a new hospital.

“We were able to support Carriage House and the college even before the water upgrades so we can definitely support a new hospital now,” James Lynden, Fredonia Village Board member, told the OBSERVER Thursday evening.

During this week’s budget meetings Paul Snyder of the Chautauqua County Health Department addressed the board citing that “there is ample storage for meeting domestic demands right now. There’s not ample storage for meeting fire flows. The village doesn’t have ample water supply to support a new hospital and SUNY Fredonia is interested in evaluating another source of water. I professionally feel that the only option right now is a large interconnection with the city of Dunkirk.”

Lynden said he had issues with the comments.

“The hospital, for example, was designed and engineered and its site plan and environmental review completed and all utility needs met all legal requirements and has been officially confirmed and approved for construction,” Lynden said.

Brooks-TLC was slated to begin construction on a new building on Route 20/East Main Street. But after delays involving a second entrance to the facility and a few other state issues they would have continued forward, but the pandemic hit.

Lynden said the village’s water supply can more than adequately supply a new hospital, and the new updates that have been made at the water treatment facility as well as connections and the Vineyard Drive Pump Station will make everything better.

As for the budget being discussed, Lynden shared that “the village mayor (Doug Essek) has no legal authority to revise his proposed budget that included a 17% increase in taxes that he presented to the village clerk and village board.

“I question why are you window dressing?” Lynden asked. “It will be now up to the trustees to do the best we can to adjust that mess and come up with a reasonable budget.”

After a week’s worth of meetings, Lynden feels that the board is well on their way to getting a manageable budget together and things will seem more reasonable when the revisions are complete.

“What’s the point of a chief budget officer (Essek) if he can’t stay within or present a reasonable budget?” Lynden asked.

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