Hempstead to sue Northrop Grumman, Navy over toxic plume

The Town of Hempstead is suing Northrop Grumman and the Navy, claiming they contaminated its groundwater supply.

The Town of Hempstead is suing Northrop Grumman and the Navy, claiming they contaminated its groundwater supply.

The Town of Hempstead is suing Northrop Grumman and the Navy, claiming they contaminated its groundwater supply. (7/7/16)

HEMPSTEAD - The Town of Hempstead is suing Northrop Grumman and the Navy, claiming they contaminated its groundwater supply.

The town is looking to recover the money it spent to protect residents in the Levittown Water District.

As News 12 has reported, a toxic plume has been spreading underground from the former Grumman-Navy property in Bethpage for decades.

The $50 million suit claims that reckless behavior by Grumman, the Navy and several Levittown businesses directly led to contaminated drinking water in the Levittown Water District, which serves 50,000 customers.

Hempstead Supervisor Anthony Santino said the full extent of the plume is still unknown, and the town has already spent $8 million on a filtration plant, with a second one expected by the end of the year.

"We believe that the Navy and Northrop Grumman are responsible for the plume among other parties and should foot the bill, not the taxpayers, not the residents of the districts," he says.

Levittown residents agree with Santino and say they feel it is time for Grumman to take responsibility for the problem they're accused of creating for thousands of Long Islanders.    

"If they were contaminating water and they knew about it, they should have to pay," says Diana McGlome.

Grumman officials did not immediately respond to a News 12 request for comment.

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