Barnstable County Fire Training Academy Settlement Announcement


JUNE 28, 2017


The Town of Barnstable and Barnstable County settle Fire Training Academy litigation related to the Mary Dunn Wellfield.


Representatives of the Town of Barnstable and Barnstable County announced that the litigation between them concerning the County’s Fire Training Academy has been settled. The Fire Training Academy was the site where so-called Perfluroalkyl Substances (PFAS) known as perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOS) and perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOA) were released when firefighting foams were used in training. The chemicals eventually made their way into groundwater and ultimately into the Town’s public water supply downstream at the Town’s nearby Mary Dunn Well system.


According to Mark Ells, Barnstable’s Town Manager, “Today’s settlement reimburses the Town for $2,950,000 in capital costs that it has incurred to respond to the pollution. It also provides $170,000 for past operating costs through June 30, 2017. Additionally, the County will reimburse the Town for up to $125,000 in operating costs per year and will also provide another $70,000 per year for estimated water filter replacements. We are very pleased that this difficult litigation will be put to rest while protecting the Hyannis Water System’s ratepayers from expenses caused by this unfortunate pollution.”


The agreement also calls for a side agreement that will grant the Town of Barnstable access to the Barnstable County Farm in order to conduct extensive testing to determine if future wells might be located at the Farm.


The settlement excludes the PFOS and PFOA pollution that has been found in the Town’s Maher wellfields from the resolution reached today. Both parties have reserved their rights with respect to any claims related to the Maher Wells although they have agreed to enter into non-binding mediation should tests show that the County or other sources may have a contributing source of any such pollution.


For more information, you can view Town Manager Mark Ells interview with Channel 18’s Sara Mannal on today’s Barnstable Today here.