New Jersey Water Works Items.
Owing to the alarming water situation at South Orange everything is being done to relieve matters. Arrangements are being made for emergency connections with either Newark or East Orange, or both.
J. William Griffith, superitendent of the Jersey City waterworks, in a communication to the township committee of Kingsland, stated that, by a recent court decision, the city was in a position to sell the township water at the rate of $60 per 1,000,000 gal. If the offer is accepted, he added, the city must agree to make three connections with the water system as follows: In the River road, at Ridgewood and at Schuyler avenue, so in case of a break water can be shut off at any one of the points, thereby keeping the town supplied all the time.
At Butler former Senator Thomas J. Hillery, of Boonton, recently addressed the council in reference to the water question. He represented the Apshawa company, which owns about 500 acres ot land above Smith Mills, about 2 1/2 miles above Butler. He explained that the watershed which feeds and drains in this company’s proposed reservoir contains about 2]A square miles, and that by erecting a dam 40 ft. high nearly 100 acres of land will be Hooded with water. He said the reservoir will hold about 10,000,000 gal. of water and with the storage capacity the company can draw off 3,000,000 gal. of water daily in the very dry seasons. Also, that as the proposed reservoir is about 450 ft. above this borough the water, because of the fall of 200 ft., can be used to generate electricity at the base of the mountain. He also declared that the water can be diverted through a pipe to the borough of Butler. Bioomingdale, Riverdale, Pompton Lakes, Pompton Plains, Haskil, Wanaque and Midvale villages, which contain about 9.000 inhabitants. There would be not only water enough to supply these villages, but an abundance over to be used along the line for manufacturing purposes. The electricity, it was pointed out, can be transmitted along the line and to these various towns from its place of manufacture near the reservoir. Mr. Hillery suggested that the council defer action until the Apshawa company, which he represented, is in a position to make a positive proposition.
Health Officer Selsker M. Gunn, of Orange, in the annual report of the board of health shows bystatistics what is being done along the line of bettering sanitary conditions and makes many recommendations, chief among which is the scientific filtration of the water supply. Attention is called to the possible sources of pollution from certain properties along: the city’s watershed back of the Orange mountain. While such danger is very remote, in the belief of Mr. Gunn, he urged the elimination of all possible sources of pollution. in recommending scientific filtration Mr. Gunn says: “Analyses of the Orange water supply nearly always reveal the presence of intestinal bacteria. Probably most of these are of animal origin, and when the nature of our water supply is considered it would seem that this is unavoidable, as contamination from animals is constantly taking place, which it is both impossible and impracticable to stop. When this is taken into consideration with the fact that the drainage area of the water supply will probably be built upon to some extent, in the upper reaches, in the near future, and the possibilities of pollution thereby increased, I cannot but feel very strongly that the w’ater should be scientifically filtered. Immunity in the past from typhoid fever should not cause overconfidence to arise. Unfiltered surface waters of this character are universally considered unsafe, unless filtered as above mentioned. I would make a most earnest plea that steps be taken at once to start the necessary municipal machinery in action that will bring about this improvement.”
The advocates of the Passaic Valley trunk sewer have not been discouraged by litigation which is delaying actual work upon the sewer. The Belleville board of trade has voted favorably upon another appropriation to the Passaic Valley Sewerage Commission. The amount asked for this time was $2,500, and the request was considered a reasonable one, though the town has already advanced $5,000. Newark has also made two appropriations, the latest one of $50,000, so the commission has now funds for the prosecution of the enterprise just as soon as the legal proceedings started in Washington have been terminated. There is every reason to believe that ii will not be long before a definite announcement will be made of an agreement entered into whcieby the New York and federal authorities will withdraw their objections to the plans for the sewer. Should a compromise be delayed, assurance is given that the sewer will be built. There is more than one way of carrying out the project, so as to avoid further contention. The communities that will be affected by the improve ment need feel no apprehension at this stage of the proceedings that the money they invest in the enterprise will be thrown away. The pollution of the Passaic will be a thing of the past in the course of the next few years.