Town of Wayland Updates Water Treatment Plan

Town of Wayland 9/22/21: Press Release.

The Town of Wayland issued a statement today regarding the status of ongoing efforts to address PFAS in the Town’s water supply.  On June 30th, 2021, the Board of Public Works held a public meeting to deliberate the various options related to the treatment of PFAS at the Town’s Happy Hollow wellfield location.  Before taking a vote, Town Administrator Louise Miller, DPW Director Tom Holder and a representative from the Town’s engineering firm of Tata & Howard Ryan Neyland, each presented the pros and cons of the various PFAS treatment options.  After careful consideration of all the options, the Board members voted for a treatment option that, once implemented, will allow the Town to operate the Happy Hollow wellfield with non-detectable levels of PFAS.

Following the Board of Public Works vote, the Town took immediate steps to award a contract and secure the equipment needed to implement the selected treatment option.  In anticipation of this vote, the Town had previously requested and received an emergency procurement waiver from the State of Massachusetts, which will allow the Town to expedite the process of acquiring the necessary equipment.  Assistant Town Administrator, John Bugbee is currently negotiating a contract with the vendor selected to supply the required PFAS mitigation equipment.  Concurrently, Water Superintendent Don Millette has begun the process of securing all permits and approvals needed to install and operate this type of equipment.  Mr. Millette stated, “I am confident that we will have all the approvals and site preparation work completed in time for the delivery of the mitigation equipment. Hopefully, this will represent the first step towards confronting the PFAS issue as I believe we are closing in on a solution that will bring our water supply back into MassDEP compliance until a long-term solution can be implemented.”

As part of the PFAS update, the Town also announced the most recent water rebate participation figures.  As of  July, 2021 the Town has issued rebates to a total of 625 households.  This translates into roughly $20,000 in credits returned to the ratepayers who have identified themselves as being part of one of the sensitive sub-groups for which an alternate source of water is required by MassDEP.

The Town also wanted to take the opportunity to thank the public for their understanding and cooperation during these challenging times.  Wayland Board of Selectman Chairman Tom Fay stated, “On the heels of the difficulties brought on by the COVID19 pandemic, to then be faced with the challenges associated with PFAS was not what we had hoped for.  However, from the Town residents, to the town employees and elected officials alike, all have done a tremendous job of educating themselves on the issue of PFAS for the purpose of making informed decisions.  These decisions will collectively assist the Town greatly in addressing this difficult and complex issue going forward.”

The timeline for the PFAS mitigation continues to be negotiated.  However, the Town is anticipating the arrival of the equipment to begin in the Fall.  The Town will announce more precise milestone dates once they become available.

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