By Christopher Roberson
LYNNFIELD – Although ratepayers of the Lynnfield Center Water District (LCWD) recently approved a $250,000 study to look at the feasibility of drawing water from the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority (MWRA), a short-term solution is still needed for the 40 homes affected by discolored water.
“Beginning in January, we are going to be looking at that,” said Constance Leccese, chairwoman of the LCWD Board of Water Commissioners, during the board’s Dec. 17 meeting. “We’re going to do everything we possibly can do.”
Leccese said that earlier this year the district invested $50,000 in a “superficial study” conducted by CDM Smith to find the cause of the discoloration. The new study, which will be conducted by Tata & Howard, will be much different.
“What was voted on was an in-depth analysis,” said Leccese. She said the results of the study will provide timelines for a full and partial tie-in with the MWRA, as well as the positive and negative aspects of each option.
She said another objective will be to determine why one home has discolored water and the home next door has clear water. “That’s immensely frustrating,” said Leccese.
In addition, she continued to maintain that LCWD water is still safe to drink. “It’s more of an aesthetic issue, there’s no health issues,” said Leccese.
Leccese also said the LCWD continues to have discussions with the State Department of Environmental Protection.
Ratepayer Stephanie Rauseo said there was a sense of confusion among the ratepayers during the district’s special meeting on Dec. 10 regarding the proposed $5.2 million greensand filter at the Glen Drive Pumping Station. However, Leccese said she did not get the same feeling, adding that the article was soundly defeated. “The people spoke; they spoke loud and clear,” she said.
Resident Mary Mahoney of West Tapley Road said discolored water forces her to wash her clothes “four or five” times before they are clean. Recognizing that each ratepayer is allowed to use 65 gallons of water per day, she asked if an exception could be made in her situation. Leccese assured Mahoney that an exception would be made and urged her to make an appointment to have an LCWD technician come out to her home.
LCWD Commissioner Richard Lamusta said the fee structure will be revised for those ratepayers who exceed the 65-gallon limit for no viable reason. However, he said the LCWD is prohibited by state law from fining ratepayers above a certain amount.