Suffolk Legislature grills health chief over groundwater testing

At what was supposed to be his reappointment, Suffolk Health Commissioner Dr. James Tomarken was grilled Tuesday by members of the Legislature about the county's

Environmentalists say staffing shortages and testing quotas at the county's Health Department are hampering the testing program and putting people in jeopardy.

Environmentalists say staffing shortages and testing quotas at the county's Health Department are hampering the testing program and putting people in jeopardy. (7/26/16)

HAUPPAUGE - At what was supposed to be his reappointment, Suffolk Health Commissioner Dr. James Tomarken was grilled Tuesday by members of the Legislature about the county's groundwater testing program.

Environmentalists say staffing shortages and testing quotas at the county's Health Department are hampering the testing program and putting people in jeopardy.

Adrienne Esposito, of the Citizen Campaign for the Environment, says there is a restriction on the amount of water samples that are taken by the Health Department each week because of the "lack of chemists at the laboratory to analyze the data."

As News 12 reported Monday, elevated levels of contaminants were found in 13 public water wells in Westhampton.  

Dr. Tomarken says he has sufficient staff for now, but is asking for another chemist at the lab next year. He admits priority cases take precedence.

"Nobody is in danger of any problems from their drinking water in terms of the number of samples we have to process," says Dr. Tomarken.

The water testing results for Westhampton should be in by Friday.

 

advertisement | advertise on News 12

Top 5 Must See

Nassau Police say they arrested a 23-year-old man 1 Police: Uber driver beaten unconscious by passenger
Jupiter Hammon was the first African-American poet to 2 Black History Month: Jupiter Hammon
Catch 3 LI Winter: Theaters add extra shows for winter break
Ednilson David Cruz Alvarado is charged with assault, 4 Man accused of assaulting woman in his home
A pilot from Wheatley Heights is recovering after 5 LI pilot recovers after plane crash in NJ

advertisement | advertise on News 12

More News

As a precautionary measure, Suffolk County is handing Officials offer water to Westhampton residents as precautionary measure

As a precautionary measure, Suffolk County is handing out water to people who own private

Town Supervisor John Venditto ordered that the playground Navy holds meeting on Bethpage cleanup

Frustrated residents attended the Navy's semi-annual public meeting in Bethpage Wednesday evening to discuss the

The state is investigating whether large drums of State probes possibility of toxic drums in Bethpage

The state is investigating claims that large drums of hazardous materials were buried at Bethpage

The state sent a letter to Northrop-Grumman last DEC warns Grumman to speed up cleanup process at former plant

The state sent a letter to Northrop-Grumman last week warning the company to speed up

Sorry to interrupt...

Your first 5 are free

Access to News12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Time Warner® and Service Electric℠ video customers.

Please enjoy 5 complimentary views to articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.

LOGIN SUBSCRIBE