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$8 Million Dollars Negotiated for Contaminating Water in Southington
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The EPA has reached two settlements to help pay for the clean up of ground water, polluted by a dump in the town of Southington. The settlements total more than $8 million.

The town of Southington operated a municipal dump just east of the Quinnipiac River from the 1920s until 1967. There was a municipal well nearby that provided public drinking water from 1971 until it was closed eight years later, after pollutants leached into the water from the landfill. The ground water also became contaminated .

The first of two settlements announced this week is with four companies: GenCorp Inc, Kraft Foods, Shell Oil Co. and United Technologies as well as with the town of Southington that operated the dump. The second settlement is with 86 smaller companies which generated waste that was disposed there.

The four larger companies will pay the EPA  a total of $500,000 to oversee the clean up. An additional $537,000 will be paid to the U.S. Department of Interior for natural resource damages. And the state of Connecticut will get $2.75 million  also for damages to natural resources.

EPA Attorney Michelle Lauterback, who helped negotiate the agreement, said it will insure that a contaminated ground water plume is contained:

“By monitoring the ground water and making sure the plume does not expand, we're making sure the residents in the nearby area remain protective”

There have been earlier settlements that did not address groundwater contamination. Lauterback says it will take 30 years before the site is cleaned up.

For WNPR, I'm Nancy Cohen.