Suwannee County Water Gets Tested

Suwannee County commissioners are trying to clean up an old mess of leakage from two old diesel fuel tanks contaminating soil.

Johnny Wooley, Suwannee County Coordinator, says, "We initially last year did some testing and removed the tanks. We felt like we'd gotten all of the contamination out based on the lab results that came back. It was discovered there was some additional contamination that need to be removed."

The tanks were found during recent construction behind the courthouse where the old jail once stood.

The Florida Department of Environmental Protection says the initial report claiming the contamination was cleaned was incomplete, ordering the county to run more tests.

The results of the tests are not in yet, but what the county commission board does know, contamination or no contamination, this process is costing them a pretty penny.

Billy Maxwell, County Commission chairperson, says, "It's very expensive. This is running close to $70,000. If it's contamination cleanup, it could run into hundreds of thousands of dollars, but we believe we will not find any further contamination."

The DEP specialist handling the case is in Jacksonville, but told Eyewitness News via phone that if contamination is present, the county board has to assess and define
The extent.

Suwannee County commissioners have until April 15 to report the results to the DEP.