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Town waiting for county health department approval

COURTESY PHOTO A similar public restroom, shown above, is slated to be installed at Volunteer Park when county officials give the go-ahead.

COURTESY PHOTO A similar public restroom, shown above, is slated to be installed at Volunteer Park when county officials give the go-ahead.

“One down. One to go.”

That’s how Commissioner of Public Works Jay Card Jr. described the town’s progress gaining approvals for projects from the Suffolk County Department of Health Services.

The first approval was to continue to store salt in a barn at the Recycling Center for use on roads in stormy weather. Following a health department inspection during the winter at the Recycling Center, Mr. Card had been told that the salt couldn’t be stored on the Island, raising an issue of whether the town would have to resort to using just sand instead of a sand and salt combination on icy roads.

The town has always minimized the use of salt, Mr. Card said, at a hearing with heath department officials, and made the case that the mix of salt and sand was necessary to properly treat the roads.

Word came at the end of last week that he had won that battle.

Still pending is an anticipated approval for installation of a bathroom at Volunteer Park on Bridge Street. The unit was purchased with $67,000 from Suffolk County along with contributions from the Chamber of Commerce and the town.

But when the unit was delivered and ready for installation, the health department said it couldn’t be geenlighted unless it was linked to a septic system.

Cost aside, that would result in wastes being leached into Dering Harbor and Chase Creek, Mr. Card told the county.

Officials knew how the unit functioned, Mr. Card said, and understood that it would be pumped out regularly, the same as the Port-A-Potty that has been placed in the parking lot on Bridge Street during the summer months. The only difference is the Port-A-Potty is a temporary structure while the new unit to be installed Park would be permanent, he said.

County Legislator Bridget Fleming (D-Noyac), who represents the Island, interceded and Mr. Card expects approval for installation this spring.

Still pending is a lawsuit filed by Jack Kiffer, owner of the Dory, who blames the town for failing to move faster to put a bathroom in the Bridge Street area so visitors aren’t asking him to use the bathroom at his bar and restaurant.

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