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Lily Dale season may delay work on water line

A proposed time frame for work on the Lily Dale water district’s new lines has one Pomfret Town Board member unhappy.

At the board’s September meeting, Brett Christy questioned the unofficial project estimate Supervisor Don Steger said he had received from an unnamed engineer. Steger said he was told contractors could install Lily Dale’s water lines in the early spring of 2020, but then would have to bury them without connections to the rest of the town’s system by Memorial Day so the Lily Dale Assembly’s summer season is not disrupted.

Christy criticized that, wondering why the connections can’t be made at the same time as the construction. “It’s in our best interests to go in, make a mess, get it done and get it out of there,” he said. “I’d like (engineers) to stand in front of us and talk about the process.”

Steger said there just wouldn’t be enough time for a contractor to install water lines and make connections to an existing system so early in the season. Christy stated that in his experience, engineers are not good at project management.

Steger then said he was worried it would cost the town more money if contractors were told to push to get in the connections, but did not get the job done on time.

“This is all speculative until you get the engineer’s specs and budget,” noted Town Attorney Jeffrey Passafaro.

In any event, funding for the project is apparently not yet assured. Steger concluded the discussion by saying the Lily Dale water line work could go out to bid now, but there is no money to fund it yet. He said the town government is still awaiting official word from the state on whether it was awarded a grant it expects to get for the project.

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