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Factory in village with tainted water gets Superfund tag

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HOOSICK FALLS, N.Y. (AP) -- A factory site contaminated with chemicals that also tainted drinking water in an upstate New York village near the Vermont border has been designated a federal Superfund site.

The listing announced Monday by the Environmental Protection Agency allows federal resources to be used to clean up areas of Hoosick Falls contaminated with PFOA. The chemical formerly used to make Teflon and similar coatings has been linked to health problems.

The Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics plant was previously added to the state's Superfund list of priority projects.

U.S. Sens. Kirsten Gillibrand and Charles Schumer had advocated the federal designation.

Saint-Gobain has added filters to public and private wells to remove PFOA until an alternative water source is found.

A Saint-Gobain spokeswoman said the company is fully cooperating with authorities investigating the contamination.

The DEC and DOH released the following statement:

The New York State Departments of Environmental Conservation and Health released the following statement on the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) addition of the McCaffery Street plant site to the National Priorities List.

“We welcome the federal government’s addition of this site to the Federal Superfund Program, which we requested in January 2016. We will work in partnership with the EPA, as New York State continues to hold Saint Gobain and Honeywell accountable for cleaning up their contamination and providing an alternative water source to the community.”

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“This is critically important and welcome news as the 3,600 residents of Hoosick Falls will now see the contaminated Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics site eligible for federal funding, permanently. I am proud to have advocated on behalf of the people of Hoosick Falls and the surrounding communities so they can have access to the funding necessary to clean up contamination and have safe drinking water. I look forward to working with the EPA, state and local officials, as well as the local community, to ensure that PFOA contamination is remediated and the health and safety of our families is protected,” said Faso.

“Hoosick Falls residents need all hands on deck -- and especially the EPA's Superfund status -- to hold accountable Saint-Gobain who created this PFOA mess and force them to clean up the pollution. I am glad that EPA has heeded our call to add this site to the Superfund list, because it gives the EPA leverage to make the polluters pay and to set a protocol for investigation and clean-up. I will continue to watch this situation like a hawk and will continue to remain in very close contact with the local officials to make sure the feds are meeting their deadlines,” said U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer


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